The World Cocoa Foundation and the Sustainable Trade Initiatives in Holland are predicting a total extinction of Ghana’s cocoa subsector if immediate steps are not taken to halt illegal mining (galamsey) and reverse deforestation.
According to the groups, the Government of Ghana must start sustainable steps to stop illegal mining as studies conducted by the United Nations paints worrying pictures of galamsey on Ghana’s economy in the medium term.
Speaking to Citi Business News at a workshop in Accra, the programme Director of Cocoa at the Sustainable Trade Initiative, Jones Mva Mva stated that the level of forest destruction in Ghana has reached alarming rate.
He observed that Ghana’s forest zone is fast experiencing deforestation due to the activities of illegal miners, a situation that will soon affect cocoa production adversely.
“No forest, no cocoa. To have cocoa we need rains, to have rains we need forest.
It is therefore important to stop the deforestation else in the near future we will not talk of cocoa anymore in Ghana because it will be more or less a desert,” he warned.
“We cannot grow cocoa in a desert. Therefore what w have to do is to make sure we do not only restore this land destroyed by the galamsey operators, but also we reforest all those areas to make sure we have rains for cocoa,” he added.
Linking the phenomenon to the destructions of water bodies, Mr. Mva Mva stated that the major water bodies in the forest zone risks getting dried.
He called for intensified government collaboration with locals to save the fore zone from further destructions.
Mr. Mva Mva made these assertions during a cocoa and forest initiative workshop held by the World Cocoa Foundation, International Sustainability Unit, the Sustainable Trade Initiative and the Partnership for Forests.