The Russia and Ukraine war keeps impacting global food supply chains and Ghana’s major export earner, cocoa, is not left out.
Chief Executive of Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), Joseph Boahen Aidoo, says the situation has skyrocketed fertiliser prices, making it next to impossible to import the needed ingredients for cocoa cultivation.
Speaking to a newly constituted management committee, the Chief Executive of COCOBOD called for an emergency national strategy for cocoa farmers, saying, the acute shortage of fertilisers will last for the next two years.
“The coming years will be very difficult for us as a sector, and for our farmers because the war in Ukraine has come to compound the adverse effect of the COVID-19 pandemic to the extent that the basic ingredients needed in producing fertilisers and other chemicals are going to be difficult to come by. We have to brace ourselves for the coming years and expect that the price of fertiliser will not be the same – even getting the fertiliser will be a challenge,” he revealed.
But COCOBOD has resolved to avert any impact this development could have on the cocoa production for the 2021/2022 cocoa crop season.
The COCOBOD CEO, thus, called for a national crop strategy that will see to the prioritisation of massive local production of fertiliser inputs to make for the acute shortage of fertilisers.
“It will mean that the management committee will have to come up with a strategic direction for our cocoa farmers. This is to ensure our production target is not affected,” he added.
COCOBOD inaugurated a three-member special committee including the Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana (CRIG), the Seed Production Division (SPD) and the Cocoa Health and Extension Division, all set up to facilitate the research and development of cocoa production.