Food Processing Sector

Sector Overview

The food processing industry plays a major role in Ghana’s economy. Major food crops in Ghana generally consist of cereals and starchy foods. Cereals include maize, rice, millet, guinea corn and sorghum, while starchy crops include cassava, yam, cocoyam (taro) and plantain.

Currently, food processing in Ghana is done by medium scale enterprises. Over the years, the Government of Ghana has implemented policies that add value to Ghana’s raw agricultural products (e.g. cocoa, cotton, oil palm, etc.). In recent times, intensive efforts have been made by government to process some of these products; for example, volume of cocoa beans processed locally has doubled in the last decade.

Agro-food Processing

Ghana has a wide range of agro-products that are currently exported in their raw state. Opportunities therefore exist in the agro-food processing sector for manufacturing industries to add value to local agricultural products e.g. cocoa, cashew, tropical fruits and vegetables. With the emphasis shifting from raw exports to processed exports, the investment opportunities are endless.

Guinness Ghana Limited and Accra Brewery Limited have introduced cassava beer into the Ghanaian market which is currently doing very well. . The introduction of the beer has provided ready market to cassava farmers. This is partly responsible for the general increase in the area put under cassava production. So far, a total of 4,741mt have been purchased, with Guinness Ghana Limited buying over 74 per cent and Accra Breweries Limited buying the rest.

Brazil Agro Business Ltd, PVL, GADCO, Aveyime, Afife/ Weta, ICOUR, are also large scale rice commercial farms operating under irrigation. Their milled and branded packaged rice are sold everywhere on the Ghanaian market. These farms are contributing immensely to the increased rice production and consumption in Ghana.

Seafood Processing

The seafood processing sub-sector is emerging as one of the attractive sectors for investment. The free zone can currently boast of one of the major fish processing firms in West Africa, processing about 170 tons of seafood (tuna) a day. There is, in fact, a large volume of tuna, available all year round in the coastal water of Ghana. The processing of tuna and many other marine species therefore presents a great opportunity to any investor interested in seafood processing.

Table 1: Ghana’s exports of some prepared or processed foods– 2014

Product Weight (Kgs) Value (US $)
Cocoa Paste 170,096,360 568,820,471
Cocoa Powder 27,543,179 64,040,806
Cocoa Shells, Husks 21,199,234 12,208,875
Cocoa Confectionery 1,415,423 4,763,639
Chocolate 50,977 128,924
Cocoa Butter 2,860 34,463
Dairy Products
Milk&Cream 2,431,354 13,873,683
Butter,Cheese Etc 370,045 195,144
Yogurt: 30 12
Prepared Foods
Canned Tuna 24,090,904 151,812,675
Cut Fruits 6,373,739 50,188,806
Baby Food 4,348,967 24,147,316
Coffee Prepared 3,235,277 13,172,758
Groundnuts Prepared 4,605,318 11,243,457
Sweet Biscuits 4,149,145 10,003,071
Pasta 3,814,024 4,746,943
Tomato Paste 1,963,545 1,329,466
Canned Sardine 370,178 423,955
Canned Meat 684,616 412,434