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Gov’t’s plans to sell farm produce at Agric Ministry unsustainable – ESOKO

Gov’t’s plans to sell farm produce at Agric Ministry unsustainable – ESOKO

ESOKO, an online agricultural marketing and messaging service says the proposed initiative by the Ministry of Agriculture to bring foodstuffs to the urban centers is only good for a short period and unsustainable.

The Minister of Food and Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto has disclosed that his Ministry is expected to pilot the selling of farm produce at farm gate prices at its Directorate.

Speaking to Kwame Malcolm on Empire FM in the Western Region as part of his working tour of the Western North and Western Regions, Mr. Afriyie Akoto noted that the move is based on an appeal from a cross-section of farmers he met during his tour.

But speaking to Starr News, the Content Manager for ESOKO Pricing Group, Francis Danso Agyei stated that the initiative comes with some costs that will make it unsustainable as a long-term project.

“When they (market women) go for it from the producers they also have the cost of transportation. Then the cost of adding value and grading all that is a cost to them. Before they transport to the market and while on the market they have other costs that they will pay for, toll and all that are costs that come to them.

“They will also add their margin and then pass it on to the consumer. So if the government wants to be a player it means that the government will also pay for all these things. I don’t know how much the government will want to add as a margin onto the produce and then pass it on onto the consumer. But they will have to bear all these costs as well,” Mr. Agyei stated.

He continued: “So the proposal is good in the short run but as things move and drag on. What are the volumes of food coming in. Because if you have large volumes it is going to force the other players to also try and then reduce what they are selling to match up to the government.”

The Content Manager for ESOKO further added that the government’s volume of products will be little and insignificant on the market which cannot drag prices down.

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