According to Ghana COCOBOD, China’s recent cocoa export raises some concerns about the sector’s future in Ghana.
The Asian country is said to have exported to Belgium its first batch of 500 kg cocoa beans worth approximately $3,600.
In an interview with Citi Business News, COCOBOD Public Affairs Manager Fiifi Boafo stated, “It’s been of concern, a concern in the sense that generally the cocoa market has been saturated and consumption does not seem to be growing as fast as cocoa production, so any new addition in terms of production is a matter of concern because higher production without commensurate consumption is a matter of concern.”
Mr Boafo, on the other hand, added that, while the trend is concerning, given the volume of exported cocoa and other factors, there may not be cause for concern right now.
“The concern is whether China will be able to produce in large quantities while remaining commercially viable. I ask because, in general, cocoa production occurs between 10 degrees north and 10 degrees south of the equator, with climate temperatures ranging from 18 to 32 degrees Celsius and rainfall ranging from 1500 to 2000 millimeters.”
“China, and the specific location we are discussing, do not have that geographical location.”
The Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences (CATAS) announced that for the first time, South China’s island province of Hainan exported cocoa beans to Belgium.
The cocoa batch is said to have been produced in Xinglong, a Hainan township with a tropical climate. According to Hao Zhaoyun, a CATAS researcher, “Cocoa is a raw material for making chocolate.
” With the increasing demand for chocolates, Hainan has been expanding its cocoa planting area and making breakthroughs in technological development”.
“Belgium is known as the ‘Kingdom of Chocolates,’ and exports to the country show that our cocoa production standards have been recognized by the international community ” He added.