Akufo-Addo government ripping off Ghanaian cocoa farmers — Minority in Parliament

April 5, 2024
Akufo-Addo government ripping off Ghanaian cocoa farmers — Minority in Parliament

The Minority in has expressed strong disapproval of the government's recent decision to increase the producer price of cocoa, labeling it as inadequate and a disservice to Ghanaian cocoa farmers.

In a press statement released on Tuesday, the Minority highlighted the disparity between the newly announced producer price and the current world market price of cocoa, which stands at an unprecedented average of US$10,000 per ton. This translates to approximately GH¢130,000 per ton or GH¢8,125 per bag on the international market.

The Minority noted with concern that the new producer price of GH¢33,120 per ton, equivalent to GH¢2,070 per bag, represents only 25.47% of the world market price of cocoa. This falls significantly short of the government's earlier pledge to ensure that Ghanaian cocoa farmers receive a farm-gate price constituting a minimum of 70% of the international market price.

Eric Opoku, the Ranking Member on the Parliamentary Select Committee on Food, Agriculture & Cocoa Affairs and Member of Parliament for Asunafo South, criticized the government for what he described as “swindling” Ghanaian cocoa farmers. He emphasized that this move constitutes the lowest percentage of the international market price ever given to cocoa farmers in the history of the country.

Opoku further lamented the decline in national cocoa output, which has dropped from 969,000 metric tons in 2016 to a mere 450,000 metric tons in 2024. He argued that in light of this decline, it is imperative for the government to provide fair compensation to cocoa farmers by ensuring a substantial increase in the farm-gate price of cocoa.

The Minority stressed that any increase in the farm-gate price of cocoa below 60% of the prevailing international market price would be considered a “monumental rip-off” of Ghanaian cocoa farmers. They indicated that any increment below GH¢5,000 per bag would be deemed grossly unfair and unacceptable.

In response to the government's decision, the Minority announced plans to summon the Minister for Agriculture before Parliament to account for what they described as “broad daylight robbery” against cocoa farmers. Additionally, they pledged to engage with cocoa farmers and industry stakeholders to chart a way forward for Ghana's cocoa industry.

1 Comment

  1. The state monopoly on buying and exporting cocoa is at the core of the decline in Ghana’s cocoa production. Most countries subsidise farmers. Ghana, in reality, tax cocoa farmers heavily, both by paying a price far under the world market price and also by stealing even a big part of what is left, through the “haircut” of public debt.

    The natural answer is to abolish the buying monopoly. Let farmers sell their products to who they want to the price they negotiate themselves. This will double cocoa production in Ghana in a very short time.

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