Communities such as Fetentaa, Domfete, Jinijini, Koraso in Berekum West District have carved a niche for themselves in the production of tomatoes in the country.
The venture is creating a significant number of jobs for the youth in the district, hence if the government pays close attention to the area, it could be developed to become an astute industry and eventually a panacea to the rising unemployment situation in the region and the country at large.
With the right investment, the growing industry could curb the high cost of importation of tomatoes into the country. Under the government’s One District One Factory Policy, the government of Ghana in a PPS has set up a Tomato Processing factory which is located at Domfete near Jinijini in the Berekum West District, Bono Region to provide a ready market for the farmers who grow the vegetable.
The project hopes to employ 350 factory workers, 2,500 out-growers, and in-growers. The factory, when completed, would have two production lines with the capacity to process 40,000 metric tons of fresh tomatoes every year.
To ensure the availability of tomatoes for the factory all year round, a demonstration farm has been set up to get the best variety of tomatoes for the farmers and their farms to feed the factory.
Aside from that, out-growers have been contacted to grow more tomatoes to feed the factory. Again, boreholes have been drilled and connected to the farms to ensure the availability of water all year round for the tomatoes farmers.
The company has also acquired about fifty acres of land for tomatoes production to ensure the availability of the raw material always.
As part of its operations, management has set up a community radio in the area to educate farmers about the modern methods of farming, among others while tomato seedlings incubator, research centre, model farm with the capacity to transplant 3million seedling every 21days to our out-grower farmers will also be established later this year.
President Akufo-Addo’s long-term vision of industrializing Ghana’s economy by adding value to the abundant raw materials in the country through a private sector-led process keeps receiving support as more individuals are now venturing into the establishment of agro-processing factories across the country.
In effect, hundreds of thousands of direct and indirect jobs would be created along the production and marketing chain while rural-urban migration could become a thing of the past as people, especially the youth would find work to do in their localities.
The factory has come at the right time since it would ensure that there will be a market for tomato farmers to ease them from the stress they go through looking for buyers.