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WFP exports cereals to Burkina Faso from Ghana

BY: Kwadwo Baffoe Donkor
Barbara Clemence (left), WFP Country Representative, interacting with Sara Nicolls (middle), Director of Development Programme, Canadian High Commission in Ghana, and Tom Gambrah, CEO of Premium Foods Limited
Barbara Clemence (left), WFP Country Representative, interacting with Sara Nicolls (middle), Director of Development Programme, Canadian High Commission in Ghana, and Tom Gambrah, CEO of Premium Foods Limited

Premium Foods Limited, a World Food Programme-assisted agro-processing company at Kwaso in the Ejisu Municipality in the Ashanti Region, has started the exportation of fortified cereals to Burkina Faso to support lactating mothers and babies to improve the nutrition of children in that country.

The export of the 1,200 metric tonnes of cereals forms part of the WFP’s food assistance to Burkina Faso as part of measures to prevent stunting and vitamin and mineral deficiencies in children in that country.

The contract, worth over $2 million, was the second won by the wholly-owned Ghanaian agro-processing firm to produce fortified food for countries in the sub-region to fight malnutrition.

This was after the successful pilot of the first contract of 600 metric tonnes of cereals worth $510,000 executed by the company.

It is estimated that it would cost about $350,000 to transport the order to Burkina Faso.

Appreciation

The Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Premium Foods Limited, Tom Gambrah, said the company had since last year produced SuperCereals for the WFP for its food support to distressed countries on the continent.

He said it was through the support of the programme that the company got a catalytic loan of $2.5 million from the Canadian government to set up the company.

He said the support from the Canadian government paved the way for other financial institutions to come on board to help the company with finances to complete the $25 million project.

Mr Gambrah urged the youth to bid their time to succeed in life, saying “it takes a lot of effort to make it in life”.

Ghana Beyond Aid

The Country Representative of WFP, Barbara Clemence, said the project and its multiplier effect, which included improving the livelihood of farmers, access to market and technical inputs, “were all visions” when it started.

She said the company had, however, been able to actualise that vision to deliver the multiplier effects.

She said the project dovetailed into the government's “Ghana Beyond Aid” agenda, and expressed the belief that given the needed support, the company could help the country to achieve that vision.

She said the export would bring in foreign exchange and also create a ready market for smallholder farmers while ensuring good nutrition for children.

Ms Clemence was accompanied by the Director of Development Programme of the Canadian High Commission in Ghana, Sara Nicholls, to supervise the shipment of the consignment to Burkina Faso.