Business News of Sunday, 27 December 2015
Cocoa farmers in Ghana have been urged to liaise with officials of the Ghana Cocoa Board (Cocobod) in their districts, in order to access fertilisers and other inputs for their cocoa farms.
Cocobod CEO Dr Kwabena Opuni gave the advice when he delivered the inaugural address at the maiden World Cocoa Farmers Organisation (WCFO) summit in Accra.
The summit was held under the theme: “Creating a uniform voice for world cocoa farmers for improved livelihood and sustainable world cocoa sector”.
Dr Opuni told cocoa farmers that forging a united front can help revamp the cocoa sector, which has over the years, sustained the economy of producing countries, adding that the collaboration of cocoa stakeholders was crucial in global cocoa sustainability.
He also expressed worry about diseases and pests, ageing cocoa farmers, moribund cocoa farms, as well as lack of interest by the youth in cocoa cultivation, illegal mining and harsh weather conditions facing the cocoa sector.
To mitigate these challenges, Dr. Opuni said Cocobod, with the support of government, provides the relevant inputs and logistical support for cocoa farmers to increase their production and income, in a bid to attract the youth to take up cocoa farming as a lucrative business venture.
“Cocobod is poised to improve the Ghana cocoa industry and deepen cocoa sustainability by the introduction of a number of interventions including the free fertiliser and seedlings distribution programmes, rehabilitation of cocoa farms, child education support programme, youth in cocoa initiative and cocoa roads rehabilitation programme”, he added.