April 24, 2024
MyNewsGh

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It has emerged that some private cocoa processors have been importing cocoa beans from Ivory Coast and other countries since 2005.

Documents sighted by MyNewsGh.com reveal that the practice even predates 1990, as these companies rely on lower grades cocoa beans produced from the countries they import from for the processing of their products.

In 2008 for example, on January 8, 2008, Barry Callebaut’s request from the Ghana Cocoa Board to import cocoa beans from Nigeria for processing was granted.

In another letter dated November 22, 2016, Barry Callebaut requested to import 100MT of cocoa beans from Ecuador for a particular recipe for a client. This request from the company was also approved by the Cocoa Board.

Apart from these letters, Cocobod in 2016 dismissed similar reports suggesting that it had imported cocoa beans from Ivory Coast.

A statement from the outfit explained that it is rather a local company, Barry Callebaut that imported 15,000 tonnes of small-size beans from Cote D’Ivoire during the 2014/15 cocoa season because it is sold at a discount.

Cocobod’s statement in 2016 dismissing claims that the government of Ghana has imported cocoa beans can be read here.

Former Finance Minister, Seth Tekper while responding to similar questions on the floor of Parliament in 2016 indicated that the practice started in 2005.

He was answering a question filed by the Member of Parliament (MP) for Kwadaso, Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto, who had sought to know the tonnage of cocoa beans imported by each of the cocoa processing companies operating in the country during the 2014/2015 crop year.

“In fact, in 2008, the same company, Barry Callebaut, imported 15,000 tonnes of light crop cocoa beans into the country from Nigeria and Togo,” he said.

This statement by the Finance Minister then was carried by Graphic Oneline and can be read here.

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Ghananewshome

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