Update 37-Year-Old COCOBOD Law To Attract Young Bright Minds To Cocoa Sector
The Chief Executive Officer of Mi-Cocoa, Nana Aduna II, is advocating the immediate review of the thirty-seven year old Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) Law to meet the present demands of the cocoa sector.
Nana Aduna II, a cocoa farmer and cocoa value addition entrepreneur, in an exclusive interview with Cocoa Post, said the country currently presents an urgent demand on the cocoa sector for jobs, value addition and increased revenue generation for national development.
To meet these expectations, he has recommended an immediate updating of the cocoa sector governing legislation – the Ghana Cocoa Board Law 1984 (PNDCL 81) – to meet modern times.
While Ghana’s premium cocoa exports continue to create millions of jobs and wealth overseas, the world’s number two top producer of cocoa beans is saddled with alarming statistics of youth unemployment.
Again, the laborious nature of cocoa farming has made it unattractive to the youth, a situation accounting for Ghana’s aged cocoa farmer population, pegged at 56 years on the average.
Nana Aduna II, who is also the Akyeamehene of Akuapim, is of the conviction that ‘modernizing’ the law to incorporate current concerns will make the cocoa business economically viable and profitable in order to attract the younger generation and brighter minds into the cocoa sector.
“The need to attract the younger generation and brighter minds to the cocoa sector and cocoa farming in particular and cocoa value addition cannot be overemphasised. real value addition including, but beyond chocolate, has to happen”, he asserted.
The producer of the Ohene Cocoa brand of artisanal cocoa products, opined that such review of the COCOBOD Law must in the end make for “easier access to Cocoa beans for local entrepreneurs”, as well as “encouraging local processing directly involving farmers”.
Again, “implementation and exercise of aspects of the law that support indigenous industry” must be considered for the overall benefit of Ghanaians and the economy in general, he emphasised.
Speaking earlier on behalf of the Cocoa Value Addition Artisans Association of Ghana (COVAAAGH) at Ghana Cocoa Board’s launch of the 2021 National Chocolate Week, Nana Aduna II known in private life as Dr. Yao Mfodwo, noted that vast opportunities exist in the cocoa value chain for jobs and wealth creation.
He identified outdoor tourism activities in cocoa farms, value addition, processing (small to medium scale), healthcare, confectionery, renewable energy, and among others as full of opportunities requiring the enabling environment to be exploited.