Agriculture INDUSTRY


When we mention cocoa quickly the name of Tetteh Quarshie comes to mind as the brainchild behind its introduction to Ghana. Another thought that runs through our minds is that cocoa is a major crop export from Ghana. Truth is that even a newly born baby knows this fact. But how well do we know and appreciate certain details about cocoa. A crop that has contributed a lot to the national coffers. With your consent we share with you some extra information about cocoa :

1.GDP contribution:  Most important export crop, which accounted for 8.2 percent of the country’s GDP and 30 percent of total export earnings in 2010. Cocoa4

2.Total production:  Total production from 450 000 tons in 2000 to 900 000 tons in 2010.  Ninety percent of total production grown by smallholder farms.

3.Cocoa marketing:  All cocoa beans are sold to Licensed Buying Companies (LBCs), which in turn sell to the only authorized exporter in Ghana, the COCOBOD (Govt. Agency) or to domestic industries for local processing. Main export destinations:  European Union, Japan and the United States.

4.Country’s foreign exchange:  Important commodity for the country’s foreign exchange earnings (around 25 percent in 2010), and subject to regular policy interventions by the Government, including export tax, licensing arrangements and input subsidies.

5.Third largest producer:  Ghana is the world’s third largest producer.

6.Second largest exporter:  Second largest exporter of cocoa beans after Cote d’Ivoire. It has been estimated that in 2010/2011 Ghana’s exports of cocoa reached 1 004 000 MT (GAIN, 2012).  In terms of world cocoa exports, Ghana has maintained its position as the 2nd largest exporter (by quantity) of cocoa beans for the period of 2005 – 2011.

Cocoa 2   7.Cocoa butter export: The country ranked 8th, 9th and 7th in cocoa butter export in  2005, 2006 and 2009, respectively, while cocoa paste exports have decreased to such a level that Ghana was no longer ranked among the top 9 exporters of cocoa paste worldwide in 2008 and 2009, although between 2005 and 2007, Ghana ranked in the 3rd or 4th position. Moreover, in 2010 exports of cocoa butter and paste to the USA increased dramatically from 32 million USD to 86 million USD, most likely because of the higher quality of cocoa products produced in Ghana (GAIN, 2012).

8.Highest export crop earner:  Cocoa is considered to be the highest export crop earner for Ghana accounting for 8.2 percent of the country’s GDP and 30 percent of total export earnings in 2010 (Ghana Statistical Service, 2010; GAIN, 2012).

9. Controlled marketing system: Ghana is the only cocoa producing country, which has a controlled marketing system. External marketing is controlled by the state owned Cocoa Marketing Board (Laven, 2007).

10.Employer:  In terms of employment, the livelihood of about six million people (25 – 30 percent of the population) depends on the cocoa sector (Anthonio and Aikins, 2009).

11.Cocoa producing households:  In most cocoa – producing households, cocoa accounts for over 67 percent of household income (Kolavalli and Vigneri, 2011)

12.Poverty reduction:  Research has also shown that poverty reduction among cocoa farmers is clear, with surveys conducted in 1991, 1999 and 2005 indicating a reduction in poverty levels among cocoa producing households from 60.1 percent in the 90’s to 23.9 percent in 2005 against the national poverty rate which has fallen from 51.7 in 1991/92 to 28.5 percent in 2005/2006. The sudden decrease in poverty levels for cocoa producers coincides with a period of favorable cocoa prices, higher yields, and increased production.

13.Formation of COCOBOD:  In recognition of the contribution of cocoa to the development of Ghana, the government in 1947 established the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) as the main government agency responsible for the development of the industry.


Akosua Boadu harvesting, on her farm in village of Amankwaatia

Culled from Ghana


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