Ghana Orders Security Forces to Clamp Down on Cocoa Smuggling

By Moses Mozart Dzawu

Cocoa beans. Photo: Funmi Ajala
Cocoa beans. Photo: Funmi Ajala

Ghana’s cocoa regulator said the nation’s security forces will clamp down on the smuggling of beans as a disparity in producer prices are encouraging illegal trade with neighboring Ivory Coast.

The world’s second-biggest cocoa producer is trying to stop smuggling from Ivory Coast, where the chocolate ingredient cost a quarter less than in Ghana. The influx of beans will weigh on Ghana’s ability to maintain the level of farmer payments even as an oversupply of cocoa is weighing on international prices.

Because “there’s no border wall between us, it is likely that some cocoa will trickle in,” Ghana Cocoa Board Chief Executive Officer Joseph Boahen Aidoo said by phone. “It is not in the best interest of Ghana.”

The cocoa regulator hasn’t received any official report on smuggling activities, Aidoo said. Cocoa buyers are aware that they will be sanctioned if they’re found to be purchasing beans from Ivory Coast, he said.


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