Former EPA Boss Says Ghana's Cocoa Risks Being Banned From International Market Over Illegal Mining

Former EPA Boss Says Ghana's Cocoa Risks Being Banned From International Market Over Illegal Mining

  • The former Environmental Protection Agency boss, Henry Kokofu, has warned that Ghanaian cocoa beans could face an international ban over illegal mining concerns
  • He explained that the increase in Galamsey activities across the country poses a direct danger to the survival of the cocoa industry
  • He has urged the government to intensify its campaign against the menace to save the country's cocoa industry

Ghana’s cocoa beans face a potential embargo from the international market due to the increasing risk of contamination from illegal mining activities.

This is according to Henry Kokofu, the former Chief Executive Officer of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Former EPA Boss Says Ghana's Cocoa Risks Being Banned From International Market Over Illegal Mining
Henry Kokofu says if the government does not act fast, the country's cocoa beans could face an embargo.
Source: Getty Images

He was speaking at a public lecture at the Kumasi Technical University, where he highlighted the grave economic and social impact of illegal mining, locally known as Galamsey, on Ghana if nothing is done about it as soon as possible.

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He said the cocoa industry in Ghana could be brought to its knees if Galamsey is left unchecked.

The repercussions could see the country’s economy experience another major financial crisis, leading to loss of livelihoods and increased agitations.

He explained that Galamsey activities near farmlands can affect the quality of beans produced on those farms and render the farms unsuitable for growing food crops.

He said the international community has already warned about the risk of cocoa beans being contaminated by illegal mining activities occurring close to and on farms.

These warnings, he said, could soon become a ban.

Kokofu, along with other environmental analysts, has urged the government to address the alarming pollution and destruction of the country’s water bodies and land caused by Galamsey.

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Government increases the cocoa farmgate price

This warning comes on the back of the government of Ghana’s decision to increase the farmgate price paid to cocoa farmers by 58.26% (GH¢33,120) per tonne for the 2023/2024 crop season.

According to the government, the price increase, which took effect on April 5, 2024, would allow farmers to share profits from rising global prices and deter them from smuggling beans.

Ghana’s state-guaranteed-cocoa price is GH¢20,943 ($1,574.66) per tonne or about GH¢21 per kilogramme.

COCOBOD borrows $200 million from cocoa traders reported that COCOBOD borrowed $200 million from cocoa traders to finance bean purchases.

Anane Boateng, the president of the Ghana National Cocoa Farmers Association, expressed concerns about the issue to

Parliament is expected to begin approval processes for the agreements on the $800 million syndicated loan.


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