Golden Exotics Limited, a producer and exporter of locally-grown bananas, has been urged to consider increasing its volume of export to the United Kingdom market.
Deputy Minister for Trade and Industry Mr. Carlos Ahenkorah assured the company of government’s continuous support to ensuring thriving operations in the country’s commodities export business, saying: “Government is ready to support Golden Exotics to ensure the company thrives successfully in the country to get our economy growing and reduce the country’s balance of payment deficit”.
Mr. Ahenkorah said this at the official opening of an ultra-modern science laboratory for the Osudoku Senior High Technical School at Asutuare in the Greater-Accra Region.
The science laboratory was constructed by Golden Exotics Limited in collaboration with Fair Trade, an international organisation that ensures the fair trading of commodities across countries.
The second-cycle institution, since its establishment in 1999, has not been able to offer General Science programme because it lacks a science laboratory.
The school’s inability to offer the desired course, according to headmaster Jerome Kwadzodey, has turned away a number of good students who could have improved the school’s collective performance.
“Many students, especially the good ones who want to study science, come and then go away because we are not able to offer the General Science course,” he said.
The students, who were beside themselves with joy, thanked the collaborating companies for their initiative and promised to maintain the facility.
Managing Director of Golden Exotics Limited Ben Rich explained that the socio-economic impact of a thriving agro-business in a rural community such as ours cannot be overemphasised, especially in light of the major migration trends from Africa to Europe.
“If the young men and women have reliable jobs and decent wages they will have no motivation to take the risk of crossing deserts and oceans in rickety boats in search of non-existing jobs in Europe.
“I say this to emphasise the importance of trade between Europe and Africa, especially in products such as bananas where Ghana has the potential to become a major producing country,” Mr. Rich said.
Mr. Rich indicated: “Sainsbury’s is our major customer. It is also a UK company. It is our hope that in the very difficult ongoing Brexit negotiations between the UK and European Union, nothing will be done to impede trade between Ghana, Africa and the UK. We are counting on our Minister of Trade to ensure that.
“Going forward, we want to assure our customers that Compagnie Fruitière as a Group, Golden Exotics as a Ghanaian company, and the FPC are committed to ensuring supplies of consistent quality bananas to justify the confidence reposed in us by housewives and ordinary buyers who buy our bananas and provide us premium income.”
Mr. Rich added: “Our decision as a company to expand our organic banana fields is a demonstration of our commitment to environmentally sustainable production and the welfare of our employees and communities around our plantation.
“We hope that with the continuous support of Sainsbury’s and our other customers, GEL and the FPC will continue being a catalyst for development and progress in the Shai-Osudoku district and Ghana as a whole.”
Golden Exotic Limited is a subsidiary of Campagnie Fruitiere, a leading fruit producer in the African Caribbean Pacific region headquartered in Marseille, France.
GEL, Kasunya Estate was established in 2005 for the production, packaging and export of fresh banana fruit to Europe and other parts of the world. It currently has under cultivation 1200ha of banana plantation in both organic and conventional production. It engages over 2000 employees and is located at Kasunya in the Shai-Osudoku district of the Greater-Accra Region.