No Raw Materials The sad story behind the collapse of fruit juice factories in Ghana

The fruit juice factories have indicated that the rising cost of production and other factors are causing them to produce below their capacity.

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The challenge of unavailability of raw materials needed by fruit juice processing factories may lead to the closing down of the industries in the sector.

The fruit juice processing factories have indicated that the shutdown is imminent because they are working below their potential capacities.

They also bemoaned the rising cost of production which is also a contributing factor to their low production output.

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Speaking on Accra-based Citi FM the Director of Corporate Affairs at Blue Skies, Alistair Gyimatey said effort must be made to improve fruits production in the country.

“The development is actually going to hurt industries because considering the fact that existing factories are having challenges with raw materials, what will happen to new investors? The sustainability of the operations is a big challenge so we need to look at it from the raw materials perspective.”

“If nothing is done to improve fruits (mangoes, pineapples, pawpaw) production, most of these businesses are in the danger of collapsing,” he added.

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Currently, Ghana is importing $150 million worth of fruit juice every year to supplement the local supply of only US$ 40 million.

Gyimatey said to reverse this situation government needed must show more concern in the growth of local businesses.

“How do we increase the capacity of our production base so that we will be able to meet the demand of this industry so we will able to process and stay in business?” he asked.

Will Planting for food and jobs solve this challenge?

The government has launched its planting for food and jobs program to support Agric production by linking producers with potential consumers.

Gyimatey said he was not optimistic that the program will solve the issues fully.

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He said the underlying issue of mechanisation in the Agric sector must be addressed to enable fruit processors to get the standard needed from farmers.

“If we want to produce to meet the industrial need, we need to mechanise Agric…we need a better agricultural system that will produce food crops to feed industries, create jobs and support the economy.”

“I am yet to see how it will be implemented to benefit Ghanaians but I think a lot more needs to be done,” he added.

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