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GHANA’S COCOA FARMERS THREATEN TO SELL DIRECT UNLESS PRICES RISE

Multiple Cocoa farmers’ unions in Ghana have come together to express their concerns over the current price of Cocoa, claiming that it is insufficient to sustain the rising cost of living, which has reached an alarming level.

The Obaatampa Cocoa Farmers Cooperative Union, Dormaaman Cocoa Farmers Cooperative Union, Ghana National Cocoa Farmers Association (GNACOFA), Upper Dwira North Cocoa Farmers Cooperative Union, and WASSA Cocoa Farmers Cooperative Union were all involved in raising the issue with Ghana’s Cocoa Board (COCOBOD).

Collectively, the groups have asked for the price of Cocoa to be raised from GH¢660 (circa US$65.35) per bag to GH¢1,500 (circa US$148.51) for the upcoming 2022-2023 harvest. Due to the unmanageable cost of living, as well as high costs for agricultural equipment, transport and other necessary farming activities, the farmers argue that an increase in the price of Cocoa is desperately needed.

If this does not succeed, the farmers have threatened to bypass the Licenced Buying Companies to sell their crops abroad directly. There are also fears that the lack of support for Ghana’s Cocoa industry, which makes an important contribution to the country’s economy, in particular to the foreign currency reserves, could discourage future generations from entering the sector.

Again, the hardship that Ghanaian Cocoa farmers are facing is intolerable, and if precautions are not taken, the farmers’ situation will discourage the majority of the country’s youth from entering the farming business, reducing the nation’s Cocoa production and lowering our country’s foreign exchange because Cocoa is the backbone of Ghana’s economy.

Since the government is committed to helping businesses grow, why shouldn’t Cocoa farmers receive the same assistance? As a result, the price of Cocoa should be raised to GH¢1,500 during the 2022-2023 Cocoa season; otherwise, they should forget about Cocoa.

Cocoa farmers’ unions

Photo from Future Agricultures

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