FEDCO pays GH¢16m to cocoa farmers
A licensed cocoa buying company, Federation Commodities Limited (FEDCO), has announced the payment of GH¢16 million in cocoa premium earnings to cocoa farmers across the country for the 2022/2023 cocoa season.
Up to 27,000 farmers trading with FEDCO across the country qualify to receive the premiums earnings.
The company will pay GH¢50 on each bag of cocoa sold by farmers and GH¢64 per bag for some other clientele from Asankragua and Samreboi.
At a ceremony to announce the payment, the Managing Director of FEDCO, Maria Adamu-Zibo, said the cocoa industry had been known to be the backbone of the country, and that it was the duty of stakeholders to ensure that the industry continued to thrive.
Attracting the youth
The FEDCO MD also called for an enabling environment that would attract the youth into the cocoa industry to enable it to thrive.
She called on the Cocoa Marketing Board (COCOBOD) and the relevant state agencies to decide a means of creating awareness of the opportunities in cocoa farming by specifically targeting the youth and providing them with regular training and systematic technical support to create jobs.
"The youth need to see farming as a business opportunity where they can choose to farm or engage in auxiliary services such as labour support, inputs supply, alternative cocoa farming methods, organic cocoa, fine flavour, cocoa processing and transformation,” she said.
Ms Adamu-Zibo said FEDCO and its partners had since 2012 invested more than $13 million in many communities in projects and cash premiums.
"This year alone, we have supplied 20,000 metric tonnes of sustainable beans to our clients and trained over 27,000 farmers,” she said.
The FEDCO MD further urged the farmers to continue with the good agricultural practices and to protect the soil from land degradation.
The Chairman of the Cocobod Foundation, Charles Amenyaglo, said the collaboration between Cocobod and FEDCO had been fruitful, and advised the farmers to desist from selling to unlicensed cocoa buying companies which usually smuggled cocoa out of the country.
He said smuggling was illegal, and that anyone caught in the act would face five to 10 years in jail, and encouraged farmers to report activities of smugglers in communities to Cocobod for action.
Some of the beneficiary farmers thanked FEDCO for the new farming techniques, training support and for showing keen interest in the wellbeing and welfare of farmers.