Low cocoa prices are driving some farmers in Ghana out of the sector, Joseph Boahen Aidoo, chief executive of the Ghana Cocoa Board, said on Monday.
Farmers are moving into growing cashew, farming rubber and illegal mining, Aidoo told a conference in Berlin.
“All because of the past two years’ fall in cocoa price,” he said.
He said he also sees Africa as a key market that will drive global cocoa consumption growth in coming years and more efforts must be focused on tapping into its potential.
“What we in the origin countries should seek to do is come up with a strategy whereby we can also create some kind of market,” he said. “A market in origin areas supports the price.”
Ghana is the world’s second-largest cocoa producer.
A large global surplus of cocoa in the 2016/17 season (October/September) sparked a fall in New York futures in April last year to a more than nine-year low.
New York futures have rebounded this year, prompting Ghana’s government to shelve plans to cut the price it pays to farmers.