The President and the Agric Minister examining rice from the mill
President Akufo-Addo, on Sunday, commissioned a GH¢6.7 million rice processing factory at Sefwi Akontombra, as part of his two-day tour of the Western North Region.
The factory with modern parboiling, milling and packaging plants has the capacity to process between 1.5 and 2.8 tonnes of rice per hour.
It has a standby generator plant and a mechanised borehole to supply the facility with constant power and water. It also has a fully furnished office accommodation for staff, a conference room, laboratory and a canteen/kitchen.
The Sefwi Akontombra Rice Factory was constructed under the 1-District-1-Factory Common User Facility (1D1F CUF), which is an agro-industrial factory established by the Rural Enterprises Programme (REP) under the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
The factory, President Akufo-Addo was told, will employ about 118 people including management professionals, factory floor workers and plantation workers who will work on a nucleus rice farm.
In addition, over 600 farmers from Sefwi Akontombra District and neighbouring communities will be directly engaged to supply paddy rice for processing.
With funding from the African Development Bank, the Rural Enterprises Programme (REP) has established five of these CUFs nationwide.
The 1D1F CUF factories are located in Savelugu in the Northern Region (rice processing), Nkran Nkwanta in the Dormaa West District of the Bono Region (rice processing), Akontombra in the Sefwi Akontombra District of the Western North Region (rice processing), Dompim in the Tarkwa Nsueam Municipality of the Western Region (oil palm processing), and in Nsuta in the Sekyere Central District of the Ashanti Region (maize processing).
The Sefwi Akontombra CUF is expected to be owned by farmer-based organisations and other value chain actors within the selected commodities.
The CUFs will be managed by top-notch management professionals and technicians who will be recruited competitively by the Ministry of Trade and Industry through REP to ensure that profitability and growth of the factory.
President Akufo-Addo said he would work hard to ensure more factories are established under his 1D1F initiative before his tenure expires on January 7, 2025 so that more people could get decent jobs to do.
From Emmanuel Opoku, Takoradi