GNBCC MEMBER INTERVIEW with Gerrit and Maurice Valkenburg, founders of Cluster Farming Holding Ltd


GNBCC MEMBER INTERVIEW with Gerrit and Maurice Valkenburg, founders of Cluster Farming Holding Ltd

GNBCC is pleased to share this article on its premium member, Cluster Farming Holding Ltd., based on an interview with Gerrit and Maurice Valkenburg.

Managing Director Gerrit is a constructional engineer and visionary entrepreneur with a vast Africa experience. His clear view on the development of new markets with a constant emphasis on the triple bottom line of sustainable management brought him to different parts of the world over the last 25 years. From the very beginning, Mr Valkenburg envisioned sustainable development with a strong business philosophy and strategy.

Maurice has a vast experience in supply chain management and food logistics.  The first time he saw the farm he was amazed and enthusiastic, and the idea caught him immediately: the creation and development of the first sustainable and biological farm in Ghana is an exciting challenge.  He joined the business in 2015 as Supply Chain Manager, bringing new structures to the company. 


Can you tell us about yourself and your journey to starting Cluster Farming in Ghana?

I come from a family that has always been into farming and so I developed a passion for farming. In 2011 I initially set up the farm cultivating cash crops through aquaponics in combination with African catfish, where the effluent water from the fish ponds is used to grow vegetables. At the time we underestimated  the influence of the climate in our area, especially the high humidity and its effects on the crops. Out of principles we don’t use pesticides at all and when combining aquaponics with catfish the use of pesticides will cause mortality to the fish. So we eventually stopped doing aquaponics.

The demand for catfish increased and we therefore refocused on the hatching of African catfish, cultivation of fingerlings, juveniles and table size. Our aim is to grow as a business and create jobs. We help Ghanaians to find the market and start working for themselves.

My son Maurice joined the company in 2015 and his vast experience in supply chain management and food logistics brought new structures to the company. At some point we introduced the Satellite farming scheme, since we noticed that the catfish farmers buying from us were only able to do a maximum of 2 harvests a year growing fingerlings to table size and in between a lot of them faced cash flow issues. This scheme gives the catfish farmer the opportunity to grow catfish in intervals in multiple smaller ponds where they can harvest at a monthly base and keep the cash flowing. Our company, besides juveniles and feed, supplies them with technical assistance so that they can operate the farm successfully. At harvest we even buy the table size catfish from them, so that they have a guaranteed off taker. We look for people that want to grow in the catfish business. Some are novice, some already do some small scale or large scale fish farming and are looking for new ways. We are going to sell the catfish whole round frozen and supply to buyers on the domestic and ECOWAS market.

Farmers who want to become a Satellite farmer need to have a piece of land with good accessibility, good initial water source and, of course the financial resources. We supply the pond setup including full plumbing and the farmer will construct a biological channel including reservoir etc. The pond water is reused through a RAS Recirculation Aquaculture System.

With this system a farmer can harvest each pond 3 times a year, so a total of 18 harvests for all 6 ponds in the system, where both we as a business and the farmer can benefit.

What is an accomplishment you are most proud of/What have you been able to achieve so far?

One thing we are proud of is the fact that we work without using chemicals; all processes are sustainable. The farm is very clean. You wouldn’t find any plastic or dirt and our staff respects this. The work flow in the catfish hatchery and grower ponds has been optimized over the years and we are always looking for ways to improve ourselves.

The farmers who buy from us are impressed with the quality of the fingerlings, juveniles and table size and we do not make a difference when it comes to service. All farmers are treated the same way! We also have a good relationship with the municipal and regional governmental authorities.

We are also proud of being part of Ghana’s “One District One Factory” (1D1F) initiative.

What should our members know about Cluster Farming/Could you introduce Cluster Farming to our members?

Cluster Farming is a catfish farm however aside from catfish we are also in the final stage with the construction of a chick hatchery with a setter capacity of 1.6 million breeding eggs coming from renowned breeders in the Netherlands. All processes in the chick hatchery will be executed with a strict eye on bio-security, high quality of the day old chicks and a strong vaccination regime. The hen chicks are sold to farmers for egg production and the cockerels, which can be used for consumption are given to farmers almost for free for back yard farming in the local communities. The backyard farmer can also sell it to individuals that can sell them by the roadside. They can make c3,000 net profit on a yearly basis. We are not just here for ourselves but also to share knowledge with Ghanaians.

We work mostly with women, not because we want to tick the “Gender Equality” box, but simply because women in Ghana play an important role in the communities and are extremely dedicated and reliable. Most of our staff comes from different areas in Ghana such as the Northern region (Tamale), Ashanti region (Kumasi) and Greater Accra Region (Kokrobite). We provide accommodation at the farm and always try to ensure good working conditions.

Our motto is: “Our passion is your success” and we truly stand to this.

How has your experience with GNBCC been so far and what do you expect for the future?

We joined GNBCC not too long ago and are aware that because of Covid there haven’t been too many events in the past year. However our experience with GNBCC has been good so far and we look forward to attending the next cocktail event to strengthen our network in Ghana.

What support do you expect from GNBCC Members and what do you hope to give in return?

Once our chick hatchery and catfish processing factory is completely in place, we would love to host an event here for GNBCC’s members to come and experience what Cluster Farming is all about.



FG18 - JK Odoom Road

Ekumfi Ekrawfo

Central Region
Republic of Ghana

+233 54 916 2799 - Gerrit

+233 55 069 9960 - Maurice


Ghana Post GPS:



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