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The Executive Director of the Swiss Platform for Sustainable Cocoa, Mr. Christian Robin has embarked on a working visit to Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) to interact with Management on how both entities can deepen partnerships to strengthen the existing relationship between the governments of the two countries regarding sustainable cocoa production.
At a short meeting with management of COCOBOD at Cocoa House in Accra, Mr. Robin disclosed that the visit was also to afford him the opportunity to discuss the 2030 New Road Map for the Swiss Platform for Sustainable Cocoa with management of COCOBOD and solicit for collaboration.
In response, the Chief Executive of Ghana Cocoa Board, Hon Joseph Boahen Aidoo, commended the Swiss government for the continued relationship between the two countries in the areas of value addition, consumption and sustainability efforts.
Hon Aidoo added that COCOBOD, under his leadership is currently embarking on a number of projects with the Swiss Government and called on other interested agencies to partner them to improve the cocoa sector.
He further disclosed that COCOBOD among, other projects, has rolled out an integrated database infrastructure dubbed “The Cocoa Management System” capture all details of cocoa farmers including the location of their farms, children, farm size, as well as, physical conditions of farmers and said system would invariably nib-in-the bud, allegations of some negative practices associated with the implementation of Farmer-based programmes in cocoa communities.
“The Cocoa Management System will capture the data of cocoa farmers in the country and this will help to expose misconceptions along the cocoa value chain especially the allegation of child labour in Ghana, financing its implementation is quite a huge task and COCOBOD alone cannot bear the cost,’ he added.
Hon Aidoo further hinted that, Ghana is committed to maintaining itself as the best producer of premium quality cocoa and ensure that cocoa cultivation is devoid of deforestation and child labour.
This he disclosed that farmers are encouraged to practice the inter-cropping farming system where other food crops and permanent shade trees are planted to provide shade to the cocoa trees and to protect the ecosystem.
He added that providing remunerative price for cocoa farmers is key in sustaining the sector and improving the livelihoods of cocoa farmers. He called on the Executive Director and other agencies to give their full support towards the smooth implementation of the Living Income Differentia (LID) to provide a decent income for farmers and cushion them in the event of price volatility.
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