Ghana seems to be making some remarkable strides in the domestic processing raw cocoa beans into various products.
New data from Ghana’s Cocobod, the agency that coordinates the Cocoa production sector revealed that processing of the commodity from its raw form into other products has increased from 23 to 34 percent.
Ghana’s government is projecting to have about 50 percent of its cocoa processed into refined products such as Chocolate and Cocoa beverages.
The West African country is currently the second largest producer of cocoa in the world.
But has since independence failed to capitalize on processing majority of the cocoa it exports thereby earning less from the commodity.
The Chief Executive Officer of Ghana’s Cocobod Joseph Boahen Aidoo told Africafeeds.comthat various initiatives being rolled out by his outfit may have contributed to the significant increase.
“Cocoa Processing Company is helping to promote the manufacturing of handmade chocolates in the country” he told Africafeeds.com.
“We are also encouraging the youth to venture into manufacturing of hand made chocolates in the country coupled with the revamping and supply of adequate beans to processing companies” he revealed.
Expanding cocoa production
Ivory Coast in 1978 overtook Ghana as the largest producer of Cocoa globally and has since remained the number one producer of the commodity.
Cocoa which rakes in about $2 billion for Ghana annually in exports also contributes about 2.2 percent to the West African country’s national Gross Domestic Product.
Ghana produces an average of 850, 000 tonnes of cocoa. It boasts of an installed cocoa processing capacity of 450,000 tonnes per annum.
But only 252 tonnes were processed in 2017. Cocobod has maintained it is in the position to meet the 900, 000 metric tonnes target for the 2018/2019 cocoa crop season.
Ghana and its neighbour Ivory Coast have received a $1.3 billion facility from the African Development Bank to facilitate growth in their cocoa sectors.