Agri-Impact together with West African Greenhouses have unveiled a 5,000-metre-square commercial tomato greenhouse.
The greenhouse is the first largest in Ghana.
It will be used to pilot commercial greenhouse farming in Ghana.
Speaking during the tour of the greenhouse, Executive Director of Agri-Impact and West African Greenhouses, Daniel Acquaye said his outfit has invested in this to reduce the importation of tomatoes. According to him, Ghana consumes a total of 450,000 metric tonnes but produces 318,000 metric tonnes which leaves a gap of 102,000 metric tonnes of tomatoes consumed.
Due to this gap, about 75,000 metric tonnes of tomatoes are imported from Burkina Faso.
Mr. Acquaye therefore believes that tomato produced in an open field cannot meet the demand of consumers, but greenhouse farming is the remedy.
“318,000 tonnes of tomato we produce in Ghana are produced on 47,000-hectare-land and we’re getting yields of about eight tonnes per hectare. Now if you look at the tomatoes that we import from Burkina Faso of about 75,000 tonnes, if we are to do open field production to get 75,000 metric tonnes we need more than 9,500 hectares of land.”
“If we’re to use greenhouse to fill in the supply gap, we’ll need just about 400 hectares of land,” he said.
He further outlined some benefits of greenhouse farming.
The Executive Director also indicated that to manage space, greenhouse technology is the best to go.
Greenhouses he said “will be very good for urban production in addition to having the best quality of vegetables for the Ghanaian populace to consume, and that’s why we’re investing a lot in greenhouse.”
The 5000-metre-square commercial tomato greenhouse is an upgrade from the 640-metre-square greenhouses under the Youth in Greenhouse Enterprise Project, an initiative by the Ministry of Finance.
The new largest greenhouse is funded by the Ghana Eximbank and was constructed by a Dutch company.
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