Cocoa farmers will in July this year (2018) meet with the Ministry of Agriculture to discuss the pricing of cocoa for the subsequent crop seasons.
The farmers argue that it has become critical for government to actively engage them in determining the price of cocoa following developments in the sector such as the declining price of the commodity on the international market.
Government has maintained the producer price of cocoa beans at 7,600 cedis per metric tonne for the 2017/2018 crop season despite a sharp drop in the price of the commodity on the world market from 3000 dollars to 1,900 dollars at the time of the announcement.
However, in an interview with Citi Business News, President of Cocoa Farmers at Offinso, Alex Opoku Mensah was of the view that further predictions of a decline in the price of cocoa on the international market will affect farmers, hence government must include them in determining the price of the commodity.
“In fact we want to meet the government; that is to meet with either the Agric Ministry or COCOBOD then we will know the way forward. We will meet with them by the close of July this year just before the main cocoa season”.
Mr Opoku Mensah further said that all cocoa associations in the country are working to come together to address their issues,
“Our stand and objective now is to bring all the cooperatives together, for example I am in Ashanti Region, so for Ashanti Region cooperatives in the cocoa sector we need to come together then form one federation, so we can work through our challenges together and I am working towards that”.
Again, Mr Opoku Mensah stressed that farmers are the backbone of the cocoa sector and must be given an equal playing field in the sector.
“We are the farmers, we are working hard for the sector, so without us there wouldn’t be cocoa and so that is what we have intended to do and in all this I think it will help us.