Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Ghana: Minor mid-cocoa output for 2012 season expected to fall

Minor mid-cocoa output for the 2012 season is expected to fall 60 per cent to 42,000 tonnes, compared with some 107,000 tonnes harvested in the previous seasons.

A Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) source was reported as saying that “We are not expecting a bumper light crop - our target is, plus or minus, 42,000 tonnes.” Industry insiders have attributed the fall in production to this year's bad weather. A prolonged dry spell followed by heavy rains left trees undernourished and stunted, and pest attacks have also taken their toll.

Output is also down in the world's number one cocoa producer, Cote d'Ivoire, which has also suffered from the region's poor weather. The International Cocoa Organisation forecast Ivorian output for the 2011/2012 season at 1.35 million tonnes compared to the unprecedented 1.5 million tonne harvest the previous season.

Last year Ghana produced a record harvest of more than a million tonnes of cocoa, buoyed by improved farming techniques, good weather and a small amount of smuggling from neighbouring Cote d'Ivoire. Ghana's 11-week season opened on 13 July, with a producer price of GH¢3,280 per tonne.

For more news and expert analysis about Ghana, please see Ghana Politics & Security.

© 2012 Menas Associates

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