Nana Abraham Adusei, the President of the Ghana Best Farmers’ Association, has stressed the need for policy makers in the cocoa industry to actively involve cocoa farmers in decision-making processes.
“Cocoa farmers who are the key players in the industry, bearing the brunt of the challenges on the ground, are mostly left out in decisions concerning their work,” he noted.
“It is not suitable for someone outside to speak on our behalf, because the real issues confronting us, especially those bothering on our welfare and sustainable development of the cocoa industry, are not dealt with to our maximum satisfaction,” Nana Adusei said.
The biggest flaw to cocoa sustainability, he said, was the lack of recognition for the poor cocoa farmer, who toils 24 hours to produce cocoa, bracing all the accompanying odds and difficulties on the farm.
Nana Adusei was addressing a general meeting of the World Cocoa Farmers’ Organisation (WCFO) in Kumasi, a programme that brought together participants from Cote d’Ivoire, Jamaica, Nigeria, and Tunisia among others from across the globe.
“Consolidating the Cocoa Farmer’s Voice – a Key to Sustainable Cocoa Production and Improved Livelihood,” was the theme.
Nana Adusei, who is also the President of the WCFO, lauded cocoa farmers for their commitment to duty, counselling, and adherence to good farming practices for increased productivity.
He entreated the Government to be supportive of the cocoa sector since it was critical to Ghana’s socio-economic growth – job and wealth creation.
Baffour Owusu Amankwatia, the Bantamahene, who represented the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, advocated for more benefits and incentive packages for cocoa farmers.
That, he said, was necessary to motivate them to work hard for increased yield.