An agribusiness consultant, Ken Addy has reiterated calls for individuals to consider venturing into the agricultural sector due to its great potential and high return on investment.
On the June 15, 2020 edition of the Citi Business Festival on-air series themed “Agric is new goldmine”, Mr. Addy spoke extensively on how to stimulate one’s energy, commitment, interest and passion in taking advantage of the prospects agribusiness present.
He outlined seven strategies needed for an individual’s survival in the agricultural value chain:
- Profitability: There is nobody amongst us, who is living or staying throughout the day without having a meal. It is highly impossible which comes to make the farmer, agriculturist or whoever is involved in agriculture a very important person. When you go into mining, whatever you are mining gets finished in no time –you leave the land and go away. It tells you that, although it’s lucrative, it is not sustainable. But when you come into agriculture, whenever you get the right things and put them in the right place, there is no way you are going to run at a loss. That is to tell you that, agriculture or farming is an asset which when owned, appreciates in the long term.
- Taking advantage of existing opportunities: Agric presents a lot of opportunities; no one should see agriculture as a last resort. If you have an idea of embarking on any agriculture venture, take it seriously. Just seek the necessary advice and you will be on your way to volumes of riches.
- Demystifying the poverty of farmers’ notion: It will surprise you to know that most of the agric inputs that come into the country are consumed by these farmers that people say they are poor. It is an erroneous impression. Those who are ready to listen to advice and do the right things will have a different story. It may be that they farm on a small scale basis but if they are encouraged to do the right things, this idea will change. It is not always about the scale but they may also lack the skills. Some blatantly refuse to listen to advice. That is what will linger them on in poverty but that shouldn’t be the case. Those who have seen the light are doing well.
- Having the agribusiness mindset: Don’t just enter agric for farming’s sake. You should have a real agenda and the agenda should be that you are going into business to make money. Once that is established, you look out for the best. There are short, medium, and long term farm products for you to harvest. You will make money which could help you expand and make more money. The first capital can be used as the seedbed to measure off your production. Nobody does farming for farming’s sake, the major purpose is to make money.
- Providing other lucrative agric services: There are other lucrative services. You think of starting from haulage, transportation, and warehousing. There are other farmer-based organizations that aggregate the farmers at a particular place and prepare them for the market. This is something people can invest in and make their monies alright.
- Value Addition: Processing is interesting because if you add value to agricultural products, you intend to earn more from it other than the normal local standards.
- Use of technology: The impact of technology on agriculture is huge. We talk of hybrids and they are doing well with us. Irrigation facilities are also coming up but could be developed better. The onus rests on us to even run proper tests on our soil before we use them for production. As of now, there is drone technology all over the world and it has come to stay with us in Ghana. There are drones that are helping incorrect measurements and dimensions of farms, they are aiding in detecting pests and diseases; some are being used for spraying chemicals accurately. So with technology, there will be no time-wasting. People can get their strengths to expand their farmers.
Other key factors
Meanwhile, Mr. Addy urged potential farmers to consider their resource strength, reason and the type of agriculture products they wish to grow before going ahead with any agribusiness venture.
“We should first look at the capital that the person has. The other is the purpose. Why is the person coming to venture into agriculture and discuss all those things at length? There are long term products, medium or short term products. Vegetables will fall under the short term. You may also want to look at if you will go into animal husbandry and there are others that require huge capital. You can also look at cash crops and non-traditional like snail rearing, crap and mushroom production.”, he advised.
The 2020 edition of the Citi Business Festival has a line-up of radio and TV discussions.
It is featuring virtual business fora that would be live on Citi TV.
The month-long festival of business events and on-air activities provides inspiration, business ideas, and information for persons who are starting, building or growing their businesses.
This year’s edition of the Citi Business Festival is brought to you by Citi Fm and Absa bank. It is supported by GIPC and Ghana’s comprehensive business news website, citibusinessnews.com.