Government has maintained the producer price of cocoa beans for the 2017/2018 crop season at 7600 cedis per metric tonne despite a sharp drop in the price of the commodity on the world market.
This translates into 475 cedis per bag of 64 kilograms, which starts today, October 13, 2017.
Speaking at a press conference, the Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Owusu Afriyie Akoto said government decided to maintain the price to cushion cocoa farmers despite the sharp drop in the price on the world market from 3000 dollars to 1900 dollars.
“The price of cocoa on the international market has witnessed a dramatic decline to a ten year low from more than $3000 per tonne only 10 months ago to as low as $1900 in recent months. The situation has compelled other countries to reduce drastically their producer prices of cocoa,” he said.
Mr. Afriyie Akoto stated the drop in price of the commodity has already cost government about one billion dollars.
“Government has maintained the producer price of cocoa in order to eliminate the harsh effects of the drastic decline in international cocoa prices on the earning of our hardworking cocoa farmers,” he explained.
He pointed out that the huge drop in the world price of cocoa has reduced revenues to an extent that the stabilization fund is not enough to cushion farmers and other stakeholders in the domestic value chain.
“Therefore government has sacrificed its share of the FOB(i.e export duty) in order to keep the producer price at 7,600 per tonne. “Licensed Buying Companies (LBCs) are to take note of this and pay our cherished farmers accordingly,” he said.
Giving some details, Dr. Afriyie Akoto stated that the Producer Price Review Committee also approved other rates and fees for all other stakeholders in the industry.
“These include the Buyers’ margin, haulers’ rate, warehousing and internal marketing costs as well as fees for disinfestations, grinding and selling. The margins, rates and charges have seen reductions over last year’s levels due to the price drop”.