Only 18 percent of consumable goods sold in Ghana’s leading supermarkets originate from the country.
This was captured in a report produced by a diversified international advisory firm known as Konfidants.
The report is the first in a series of Africa-wide surveys aimed at monitoring local content to help adopt a periodic framework to track progress on this agenda.
It also aims to provide evidence-based insights to guide policymaking, dialogue with supermarkets and to support local producers.
Conducted between April and May 2019, it covered eight leading supermarkets in Accra including Shoprite (Accra Mall), Game (Accra Mall), Palace Supermarket (Palace Mall) and Koala (Osu).
The rest are Maxmart (37), CityDia (La), Melcom (North Kaneshie) and Marina Mall Supermarket (Airport).
This particular survey focused on 23 main product categories chosen based on a preliminary baseline survey (in October 2018) that identified product areas in supermarkets with Made in Ghana goods on display.
“The findings from the research confirm a common observation: There are not enough Made-In-Ghana goods in the stores. A total number of 7462 brands (from the 23 product categories) were counted across all 8 supermarkets included in the survey. Out of this number, 6, 108 (82%) were foreign brands, with only 1354 (18%) being MIG [Made in Ghana] brands”, the report indicated.
Performance of various goods
According to the findings, the best performing category of Made in Ghana goods was Eggs (with 91% of all eggs on sale produced in Ghana), followed by bottled water (with 56% MIG).
Worst performing categories, however, were jointly rice and cosmetics and beauty products with 6% each of the products sold in this category produced locally.
Other poor performers were confectioneries and biscuits, beverage powder, tea and sanitary products which recorded less than 10% MIG across the supermarkets.
In all, a total number of 7,462 brands were counted across all the eight supermarkets included in the survey. Out of this number, 6,108 representing 82 percent were foreign brands, with only 1,354, that is, 18 percent is made in Ghana brands.
Comparative cost analysis
Contrary to widely held beliefs about “cheap imports”, the survey established that Made in Ghana goods were generally cheaper than imported goods in the majority of product categories.
While the price differentials were marginal on average as one would expect in a retail context, Made in Ghana goods price advantage was overwhelming across the categories of goods.
In 73% of product categories (selected for price comparison analysis), local goods were cheaper than imported goods.
This made in Ghana price advantage cuts across both basic and processed goods.
Bridging the gap
The survey recommended that for government efforts at promoting Made-In-Ghana goods, it ought to be targeted especially at products where the country has a comparative advantage and local producers have demonstrated capabilities and potential.
“Supermarkets are emerging as the preferred retail channel for the growing middle class, hence their critical role in promoting Made-In-Ghana goods. One way to improve local content is to promote targets for increasing the share of Made-in-Ghana in the supermarkets for selected products. This can be done progressively over time through innovative approaches that must be a win-win for both supermarkets and local producers “, Managing Partner of Konfidants, Michael Kottoh said.
He argued that even if local producers are competitive, increasing the share of MIG goods in supermarkets in Ghana is not bound to happen as there are larger global supply chain forces at work that can sometimes make it difficult for supermarkets to commit more shelf space for local produce even when they genuinely wish to.
“Ultimately, local producers will need targeted support from government, regulators like the Ghana Standards Authority and the Food and Drugs Authority; as well as help from the supermarkets (and banks) to support local producers to continuously improve their competitiveness (in quality, standards, pricing and packaging) as well as capacity to bulk supply with consistency and meet steep supplier credit and wholesale pricing expectations of the supermarkets,” Mr. Kottoh added.
The report comes on the back of the “This is Ghana” Exhibition organised by Citi FM/ Citi TV on Saturday where over 70 local companies showcased their products to the public at the Alisa Hotel in Accra.