The European Union has dismissed reports that Ghana’s cocoa will be banned by members of the union.
Speaking on behalf at the EU Ambassador to Ghana, Irchad Razaarly, at the 2022 Orange Cocoa Day, a Director at the EU Office in Ghana, Celine Madsen Prud’homme, said the EU rather wants more of Ghana’s cocoa.
According to her, cocoa from Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire are amongst the best in the world as they meet requirements from the EU.
“As my ambassador said earlier, there will be no ban. All countries considered high risk will be able to continue selling their products in the EU market provided producers can demonstrate that products are legal and free from deforestation”.
“There is no ban on Ghana’s cocoa. On the contrary, we want more of Ghana’s cocoa, and we are in support of Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire amongst all of the producers who meet these requirements”, she added.
Information Minister, Kojo Oppong, had earlier hinted that Ghana’s Embassy in Belgium under the leadership of Ambassador Sena Boateng, has brought to the attention of the Government of Ghana that Europe via a new legislation could soon make Ghanaian cocoa and coffee not exportable to many international markets.
This is due to the destruction of cocoa lands by illegal mining activities, as there are fears that the activities of the illegal miners may poison some cocoa beans.
Meanwhile, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources is enforcing the Joint Framework for Action, signed in 2017 with 36 cocoa and chocolate producing companies, to halt deforestation and degradation of the forest in the cocoa value chain.
This is under the Cocoa and Forests Initiative to ensure cocoa lands are not taken over for illegal mining activities.
Speaking at the 2022 Orange Cocoa Day, the Sector Minister, Samuel Abu Jinapor, said government is stepping up education and sensitisation, urging traditional and local authorities, farmers and members of the local community, to rally behind the government.
“It is disheartening, that while we are taking all these measures, people are selling their cocoa farms to illegal miners without thinking about the long-term effect of their actions on the environment. This is a matter we must deal with, which we are fully committed to. But we need the cooperation of all”, he explained.