The Ekumfi Fruits and Juices Company Limited, the first factory President Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo-Addo inaugurated at Ekumfi under the One-District-One-Factory (1D1F project in 2017, is ready for commercial production.
The facility will be the biggest fruits processing factory in West Africa, with the capacity to process 10 tons of fruits per hour.
Mrs. Gifty Ohene-Konadu, National Coordinator of the 1D1F Policy, who paid an inspection tour to the factory told the media she was satisfied with the work done.
She was accompanied by Mr. Francis Ato Cudjoe, Member of Parliament (MP) for Ekumfi, Mr Bright Bernard Grant, District Chief Executive among other officials who were taken through the various processes of production – sorting, filtration and packaging.
Satisfied with the progress of work, Mrs. Ohene-Konadu commended the President for his unwavering determination to bring development to all through well-thought-out industrialisation and job creation policies.
Funded by the Exim Bank Ghana Limited, the agric-industrial intervention has significantly gingered the spirit of entrepreneurship in many Ghanaians as her office keep receiving quantities of business proposals from various entities and persons across the world.
Touching on the efficiency, maintenance culture and raw materials supply, she said “indeed, we are grateful to Ghanaians for the support”.
“We are determined to avoid the challenges with Komenda Sugar factory which lies idle due to raw materials by ensuring that the necessary preparations were done for smooth take-off before, during and after commissioning.”
Mrs Ohene-Konadu reassured Ghanaians that the President has promised to give them factories in every district and they should wait patiently for them and “we will deliver as promised”.
Mr Frederick Acquah, the Director of Operations at the facility, allayed the fears of the public that there will be lack of reliable raw materials supply to support production saying “we have a very strong raw material supply base that would significantly create 500 direct jobs and 6000 indirect jobs in the district and beyond.”
Per the company’s five-year strategy vision, it is cultivating more than 4,000 acres of pineapples in many communities in the district as well as in the neighbouring districts that would in all, produce 80 million fruits per annum for the processing line.
It has also projected 600 acres per year, in preparing to switchgear to the next phase of cultivation that would see the expansion of its raw material base up to the projected 4,000 acres needed to feed the factory at full capacity.
The company also seeks to expand and sustain its 19 shared-grower sites established in Ekumfi Nanaben, Narkwa, Abor, Eyisam, Otuam, Egyaakwa, Asaman, and Gyankoma.
In all, share-growers engaged at the Gyankoma sites have cultivated nearly 600 acres of pineapples and keep planting every day to meet the eight acre demand of pineapple per week for the factory.
Additionally, Greenfields and Foods Ghana Limited has also cultivated about 250 acres of pineapples on their two farm sites, one at Gomoa Assin and the other at Gomoa Oguaakrom.
In order to meet full-scale fruits production requirements, Mr Acquah said the government would source for funds to immediately embark upon expansion works.
Earlier, the Coordinator paid a courtesy call on Odeefo Akyin XII, the Paramount Chief of Ekumfi Traditional Area, who in turn took the team to his large pineapple farm.
He later donated 200 acres of land for pineapple cultivation and urged chiefs to do likewise to sustain the factory.