Cocoa Farmers Demand Further Increase In Price
Cocoa farmers in the Berekum West District of the Bono Region are demanding government action as a matter of urgency to further review the cocoa prices for the 2022/2023 season. According to them, the recent upward adjustment is woefully inadequate and fails to take into account the high cost of living in the country. In
October, the government increased the farmgate price of cocoa beans by 21 percent, from GH¢660 to GH¢800 a bag. That works out to GHS12,800 per tonne for the main crop season- 2022-2023, which began on October 7. But the cocoa farmers are dissatisfied with the marginal increase. According to one of them, Kwabena
Amankona Diawo, the government has not adjusted prices in three years. He is dissatisfied that the government will only raise the price by GHC140.00. “This cocoa price adjustments we are talking about, the current government since coming into power six years ago, they haven’t increased the price of cocoa. When
they finally increased it, only 140 cedis was added. As I stand here, I have two children in the training college, secondary school and primary. With this upward adjustment the government has made, what will become of my children in the training college?, he asked. Mr. Diawo said life has become extremely unbearable for his
family. He lamented how it was becoming difficult to take care of his three children. Another cocoa farmer, Ernest Kay Kyere, accused the government of deliberately failing to improve their lives by ensuring a significant rise in the cocoa prices. He went on to say that while cocoa farmers work hard to get their beans
ready for export, which generates huge amounts of revenue for the government, they are underpaid. Every month, you people get money to buy food for yourselves and children and even use some to pay the school fees of your children. We the ones labouring hard on our cocoa farms - planting, weeding, watching it grow, plucking them, drying them - just so when I’m paid I can
cater for my children’s school fees and to also buy food but the pay is not coming, Mr. Kyere lamented. According to the farmers, they are becoming impoverished by the day as a result of the high cost of living. The chief of Jinijini, Nana Baffour Tutu Asare, also called on the government to come to the aid of the struggling farmers by providing them with adequate resources and chemicals.