THE CONCEPT OF CONTRACT FARMING SYSTEMS IN POULTRY PRODUCTION IN GHANA
By: Mr. John Senya, Chairman of Afigya Kwabre farmers Association.
The concept of outrearer schemes is based on science and technology on standard systems as is based on standards that one can measure the output of work. Out rearers schemes often referred to as contract farming in academic and other literature are important component of many public-private partnerships in developing countries. However, contract farming is an agreement between unequal parties: companies, government bodies or individuals entrepreneurs on the one hand and economically weaker farmers on the other hand. A well managed out rearer system through contract farming is an effective way to co- ordinate to promote production and marketing in agriculture. Purchasing however is more reliable and sustainable compared to an open – market purchase and the company faces less risk by not being responsible for production. The out – rearers are the farmers coming together to produce on scientific standards to meet their customers demand. Those qualified to be an out – rearers are: registrations of the business and renewable up to date, land title: plot allocation, belonging to an association, permit from District, Municipal or Metropolitan Assemblies, Environmental Protection Agency certificates, Bank Account and cash flow, Business plan, Social Security Insurance Certificate, layout of the farm. Broiler project cannot succeed without the out – rearers. They produce to feed the processing plant. Genetics + Management = success. The following are some of the standards for the efficient production of the poultry business. They are: housing, brooding, biosecurity, sanitation, quality day old chicks, quality feed, overcrowding, litter management, cash flow analysis, records keeping, good drinking water and heat stress and all forms of stress. The benefits of out – rearer system include: Farmers can open up new markets. It can provide higher income because of fixed price. Price risk is often reduced as some contracts specify prices in advance. Problems however include: Farmers may become indebted because of excessive advances. Some of the farmers divert the feed, drugs and even the birds.