Major Boost For Cashew Industry… As Gov’t Launches Development plan
The Cashew industry will experience a major boost this year as government is set to launch a comprehensive development plan for the industry.
President Akufo-Addo who was speaking during his encounter with the press said government will launch a Cashew Development plan at Wenchi in the Brong Ahafo region on February 20, 2018.
He said the plan when unveiled shall take into account government’s support for the country’s cashew industry and the required infrastructure for the sector.
“It is extremely important that we get on the bandwagon of developing this industry. There is a lot of money involved from the producers and the marketers to the distributors and also for those who will also do the processing”, he stressed.
Nana Addo cited neighboring country, Cote D’Ivoire as a major investor in cashew nuts, and wondered why Ghana cannot develop its cashew industry to generate significant revenue just like them.
President Akufo-Addo during his campaign in 2016, made several promises to cashew farmers.
Amongst his promises was the establishment of a Cashew Marketing Board to regulate the industry just as it is done for cocoa to give farmers the best prices in order to improve their livelihood.
However, the cashew development plan, we believe is a step to fulfill his promise to the cashew farmers.
History behind Cashew Production in Ghana
Research indicates that cashew cultivation in Ghana begun in the 1960’s with sporadic plantings in the Central and Greater Accra Regions and later spread to the Brong-Ahafo, Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions.
The industry is said to have suffered a set-back due to the absence of the needed support in terms of policies to facilitate its development as an infantagri-industry.
Interest in the industry rekindled after the introduction of the Economic Recovery Programme (ERP) in 1983, when cashew was identified as one of the major non-traditional crops to be developed as part of Government’s efforts to diversify the country’s export base.
The industry was met with many challenges which called for the formation of the Ghana Cashew Industry Association, an apex cashew supply chain body to among other things promote the interest of actors in the industry.
The Association is made up of farmers, processors, traders and service providers.
They made headway by organising the first Ghana Cashew Season launch in March 2014 at Wenchi.
By: Emmanuel Yeboah Britwum/ thePublisher