The Chief Executive Offficer (CEO) of Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), Mr. Joseph Boahen Aidoo, has advised the cocoa farmers to desist from child labour practices and tasks that can be misconstrued as child labour.
He also cautioned the cocoa farmers against encroachments into forest reserves for use as cocoa farms.
Mr. Aidoo was speaking as a special guest at four separate cocoa farmer rallies in the Ashanti region.
It was the first day of a three-day working tour of some cocoa growing communities in the country.
The first event was the rally organised by the chiefs and people of Antoakrom.
The second rally was at Obuasi. Then to Atobiase and Brofoyedru for the third and final rallies of the day respectivefully.
The objective of the tour is for the Chief Executive Officer to interact with the farmers and gather first-hand information about the challenges the farmers face on their farms and in their communities and address their concerns.
“I am delighted, not just by the warm welcome I have received from the farmers but also their forthright engagement.
“Each rally gives me the chance to tell the farmers about the policy initiatives of COCOBOD and how each aims to improve the business of cocoa farming and better the lives of the farmers themselves,” he said.
He shared his optimism for the outcome of the work of the Producer Price Review Committee (PPRC); the producer price of cocoa for the 2019/2020 cocoa season.
Mr. Aidoo explained the implication of the new floor price mechanism on the future of cocoa farming in Ghana and farmer-earnings from the sale of their produce.
He also cautioned that the same earnings could be hampered by a farmers unwillingness to fully observing good farming practices, particularly, pruning, fertilizer application and hand pollination.