Deputy Chief Executive of Operations at Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), Dr. Emmanuel Opoku has provided assurance that Ghana will maintain its cocoa sales to the European Union (EU).
Speaking at a stakeholder workshop held in Elmina, Dr. Opoku urged all parties involved to collaborate and fulfill their respective roles in establishing Ghana as the leading producer of traceable cocoa.
COCOBOD is partnering with GIZ to pilot the GCTS in the Assin-Fosu Cocoa District, as part of the country’s preparations to meet the EU regulation enacted in May 2023.
The GCTS aims to ensure the traceability of Ghana’s cocoa beans from the port to the specific plots of land where they are cultivated, addressing concerns related to deforestation and improving transparency in the cocoa supply chain.
COCOBOD’s development of the Cocoa Management System (CMS) since 2019 is expected to bring about a transformative change in Ghana’s cocoa farming sector, according to Dr. Opoku.
The CMS, a comprehensive system that captures farmer data, household information, and cocoa cultivation areas, incorporates the Ghana Cocoa Traceability System (GCTS) to enable traceability throughout the cocoa supply chain.
Dr. Opoku emphasized that the operationalization of the GCTS would contribute to efforts against cocoa-driven deforestation, prevent unauthorized cocoa production from protected forests, and enhance visibility in the supply chain, ensuring adherence to best production practices.
The implementation of the CMS is also anticipated to attract financial institutions and input suppliers, promoting financial inclusion, crop insurance, and the establishment of an input credit system within Ghana’s cocoa sector.
The successful rollout of the system relies on the active participation of Licensed Buying Companies (LBCs) and Purchasing Clerks (PCs) registering on the CMS.