Ghana is projecting to generate about US$1 billion from vegetable production for the international market within seven years with the deployment and expansion of Greenhouse technology.
The technology is also envisaged to produce enough fresh horticultural produce for local consumption particularly in the urban centres of Kumasi, Accra, and Tema in addition to the numerous employment opportunities for the youth. President Akufo-Addo said this at Akomadan in the Offinso North District of Ashanti when he inaugurated a GreenHouse Village, the third in Ghana.
The GreenHouse Village at Akomadan in the Offinso North District is the 3rd of such technology in the country with the two others at Dawhenya in the Greater Accra and Bawjiase in the Central Regions.
These are private-led modern agricultural technologies by AgriTop, a subsidiary of STL Group, an Israeli company in partnership with the government of Ghana.
The GreenHouse technology has proven to be an efficient and profitable modern agric production method under controlled environment non-dependent on natural rains and therefore productive all year round.
The Akomadan GreenHouse Village, which is situated on 120 hectares of land involves a training centre embedded with classrooms for technology transfer, residential facilities, Drip Irrigation facilities, Pack Houses for the production of selected vegetables from nursery up to maturity among others.
The vegetables being produced currently are Sweet Pepper of all the known colours, Cucumber, tomatoes, and Squash.
The Centre has already graduated its first of 28 trainees who passed out in December with the second batch current present under training. Among the Instructors at the Centre are some of the 80 Ghanaians who benefitted from a 90-day training programme in Israel in 2018.
At the inaugural ceremony, the Chief Executive of STL Group, Ofer Tamir, noted that the construction of the Akomadan Green House Village, which has been in progress in the last three years, is meant to impact the agricultural production in the Ashanti region in particular towards the overall development of Ghana.
The Minister for Food and Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto, said the GreenHouse Villages project is another component of the government’s agricultural flagship programme of Planting for Food and Jobs.
President Akufo-Addo was optimistic that with the Green House technology application in the agricultural sub-sector of the country, Ghana stands the chance not only to produce enough vegetables for local consumption but to overtake Ethiopian and other eastern African countries in foreign exchange earnings from the global vegetable market.