UEL students looked at the feasibility of setting up a dairy farm and production company in Ghana which would sell dairy products throughout the country and in other West African nations.
Ghana currently has no real dairy industry and imports most of its milk, cheese and similar items. This is also the case for most of the country's neighbours. These products are not widely available in the region and are considered out of reach for most people.
Students critically analysed the prospects of a dairy enterprise in Ghana and West Africa, conducting field study and market research and taking an in-depth look at how the dairy industry operates.
They also considered the cultural and religious implications, legal logistics and practical realities of setting up such an enterprise in Ghana. The project enhanced students’ entrepreneurial and practical skills.
Through on-the-ground research, the students surmised that advantages to starting a dairy business in Ghana included the country's growing economy and the relative ease of gaining the necessary permits. A thriving dairy business could also help farmers and alleviate poverty.
Drawbacks included the lack of physical infrastructure, unreliability of the electricity supply and uncertainty around the actual demand for dairy products.
Dr Eric Boahen, a senior lecturer at UEL's Royal Docks School of Business and Law, said, "The trip to Ghana provided participating students with opportunities to interact and work with people from different cultures, develop research skills, analyse the Ghana diary industry and enhance their data analysis and presentation skills.
“We were connecting with the customer in order to drive an experience – not just a product. The experience was simply great."