With support from the African Cashew Alliance (ACA), stakeholders in the cashew sector have launched the Cashew Council Ghana (CCG) to serve as the sector’s apex body in the country.
The CCG is made up of actors in the cashew value chain, and it will be a platform for cashew actors to advocate for policy reforms. Cashew farmers, processors and traders, among others, are all be represented on the Council with headquarters in Sunyani, the Bono Region capital.
The Council is responsible for reorganising the cashew sector and serving as its mouthpiece. It is also mandated to “maintain and present a unified front” for actors the tree-crops subsector.
Outdooring the CCG comes a few weeks after President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo officially inaugurated the Tree Crops Development Authority (TCDA) to regulate cashew and five other tree-crops in Ghana.
Speaking during the Council’s launch at Techiman in Bono East, Finance and Advocacy Manager of ACA Ms. Reine Dehode stated that West Africa’s cashew production has doubled over the years from 800,000 metric tonnes in 2009 to an estimated 1.7 million MT in 2020; adding that in Ghana, production has grown from 22,000 MT to an estimated 105,000 MT in the same period.
This growth, she noted, calls for proper organisation and regulation of the sector; thus most African countries introducing policies to regulate the sector.
Ms Dehode believes the CCG will complement the newly-inaugurated Authority to properly organise and regulate the sector. “The ACA is confident that the CCG will help the TCDA, which was inaugurated last month, to develop the sector,” she said.
Executive Secretary of the Association of Cashew Processors Ghana (ACPG), Ms. Yayra A. Amedzro, explained that establishment of the CCG was a requirement of the technical committee that set up the TCDA. According to her, the CCG is duly registered at the Registrar-General’s Department and will now “serve as an umbrella body for the cashew sector”.
A cashew producer and member of the TCDA Board, Chief Adams Tampuri, said the politics of international trade mean that international policies are mostly favourable to sectors that are well organised, properly regulated and developed. He said the TCDA will work hand in hand with the CCG and other sub-committees to implement policies in the industry’s interests – indicating that the establishment of these bodies is “the greatest thing that has happened to the cashew sector”.