Chairman of Avnash Industries Ghana Limited, AK Mirchandani, has been honoured with a “Lifetime Achievement Award” at the sixth edition of the Made in Ghana Awards.
The award was in recognition of his strong entrepreneurial acumen and sustained belief in the Ghanaian economy, a passion that has led to the creation of three leading agro-processing businesses for close to two decades, making it the most formidable Agro-processing company in the country.
Mr Mirchandani has invested about a hundred million dollars in three industries in the agricultural sector, specifically in the processing of rice, oil and soap, and has created thousands of employment opportunities across the various value chains.
At the same event, Royal Farmers’ Rice, a product of Avnash Industries Ghana Limited was adjudged as the “Best Quality Agro Food Product of the Year”, due to the quality of its processing, superior world-class packaging and efforts by the company to market and distribute this wholly made in Ghana rice brand.
Mr Mirchandani, in an interview after receiving the two prestigious awards, said “I think it [the award] is a great thing to have; obviously I’m a fortunate person. I must also encourage the organisers of these awards that seeks to encourage people. I think it is right for people to be encouraged.”
He commended the government on its flagship agricultural initiative “Planting for Food and Jobs”, which he said will ensure self-sufficiency while encouraging the public sector to spearhead the consumption of locally made products.
However, he indicated that the success of the programme will depend on the government’s ability to provide the right incentives for farmers and ensure that such incentives reach them.
“My belief is that industry is the future; and if the government can further help in the area of providing the enabling environment for industries to grow, prosperity will come to the people. This could be done by ensuring that producers of industrial raw material, specifically farmers are motivated to increase their production capacity,” he noted.
The astute industrialist also urged the government and public sector institutions to spearhead the consumption of local products and services to curb the over-reliance on the importation of similar items onto the Ghanaian market.
He emphasized: “With rice, for instance, this year we bought 20,000 metric tonnes of paddy rice from farmers valued at over GHC25 million, if every agency should decide to buy Ghana rice, then we are willing to procure 100,000 tonnes, and the more we produce, the more the price will come down.
The farmers will also expand their production and more people will be employed. We need such support from the government to grow.”
Avnash has become a fast-growing brand, premising its rise on key investments in the refining of palm oil, soap manufacturing and rice processing.
The success of the company is hinged on its vast local knowledge, long-standing experience in the manufacturing industry and network of partners all of which have empowered it to process quality raw materials into valuable finished goods for top consumer satisfaction.
The company’s rice mill located at Nyankpala is a state of the art facility with the capacity to process 500 metric tonnes of paddy rice per day and equipped with a parboiling unit to convert low moisture paddy to the healthy and nutritious parboiled rice. It is the first of its kind in the country to operate an environmentally friendly boiler unit powered by the waste products of the milling process.