Mr Augustine Esamoah, Business Development Manager at the Torchbearer International Agricultural Science and Technology Group (TIAST Group) says the agricultural sector can generate $30 billion annually if stakeholders are provided with highly efficient processing lines and farm tools.
He said the sector could boost the country’s economy and create jobs if there were enough qualified technicians, engineers and experts running the factories, coupled with available spare parts for processing lines and farm tools as well as quick maintenance services for processing lines and farm tools.
Mr Esamoah made the remarks when addressing participants at the ongoing 6th Agricultural Industrialization Conference in Takoradi on the theme: “Financial and Technological Support for Agricultural Processing,” organised by the TIAST Group in partnership with Stanbic Bank.
He mentioned difficulty in procuring highly efficient fully automated processing lines and farm tools, lack of qualified technicians, engineers and experts in the field; delay or unavailability of spare parts for processing lines and farm tools during downtimes, as well as the lack of efficient and quick maintenance services for processing lines and farm tools as some of the challenges of the sector.
He said industrialization was the best solution for the country’s agricultural problems as shown by China, Thailand, the USA and many other countries, where the agricultural industrialization sector generated billions of dollars annually.
He said, though successive governments since independence, cooperatives and individuals, had tried to industrialize the agricultural sector in their way by setting up processing factories to add value to raw materials, generate better-paying employment and revenue for the country, the sector had faced various technology and technical setbacks.
Against this background, he said the TIAST Group sought to design, manufacture and install a world standard fully automated processing line with a three-year warranty for the major equipment, construct a warehouse, workshop, offices, dormitories, water recycling, water treatment and water purification system for the factory.
The TIAST Group would also provide a plant with the capacity matching the installed power of the processing line for its partners and farm tools for the cultivation of farms, with a processing line that has an extraction rate of about 99 per cent and could save 30 per cent electricity and 60 per cent water as well as produce high quality processed goods that would meet international standards.