In the Zambian language Chinyanja Kulemela means to become rich or to prosper. We have never spoken to a farmer who just wants to put food on the table, and similarly we’ve never met an agribusiness entrepreneur who doesn’t have dreams for growing their business.
In Ghana small-scale farmers lack access to fair and reliable markets, and these markets lack access to flexible investment capital. Kulemela offers growth financing to small and medium-sized agribusinesses that increase food security and competitiveness in agriculture markets while returning both social and financial impact.
In the past 30 years Ghanaian rice imports have increased dramatically and now make up more than 70% of the rice consumed in Ghana. This is posing a huge food security problem especially with recent currency devaluation of the Ghana Cedi. There are two major problems that have resulted in increasing rice importation in the past 30 years. The first is a production (supply-side) problem – yields of local rice per acre are often far lower than international averages and agricultural practices are often poor (input application, harvesting methods, post-harvest handling, storage etc.) which results in poor quality rice production by small-scale farmers. The second problem is a demand side problem. As Ghanaian grown rice has historically been lower quality compared to imported rice, consumer preferences amongst the emerging middle class are for importer perfumed Thai and Vietnamese variety rice. Simply put, people don’t like eating Ghanaian grown rice because they perceive the quality to be poor even if the quality is in fact on-par with imported varieties.
Host: Mina Shahid
Facilitator: Axel Magnuson
Graphic Facilitator: Tessa Magnuson
Student Facilitator: Hy Martin