Investing in Coconuts: Takoradi hosts Third International Coconut Festival

Accra, Sept. 18, GNA – The Western Regional capital, Sekondi-Takoradi, will host the 2023 edition of the International Coconut Festival Ghana, scheduled to take place from 26th to 28th of September.

Mr Kwabena Okyere Darko-Mensah, the Regional Minister, and Member of Parliament for Takoradi, announced this during a visit to the office of the Nigerian High Commissioner to Ghana, Ibok-Ete Ibas.

Extending an official invitation to Mr. Ibas for the event, Mr Darko-Mensah highlighted the striking similarities between Ghana and Nigeria and thus, called for the strengthening of trade relations between the two countries that would mutually benefit their peoples.

Mr. Darko-Mensah encouraged Nigerian business leaders and investors to visit Takoradi for the event, noting that Nigeria was the largest buyer of Ghana’s coconuts, sourced from the South-Western region of Ghana.

Mr. Ibas also expressed similar sentiment by urging business owners from both countries to forge strategic partnerships to harness the advantages the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) provided.

The first-ever International Coconut Festival Ghana was held in Accra in 2019.

The event brought together exhibitors and key stakeholders in the agriculture and industrial sectors and marked the launch of the annual ‘National Coconut Day’ and included a tour of the Region to explore the immense potential of the coconut industry.

According to the organisers, the African Coconut Group (ACG), the Western Region stood out as a major contributor to the industry, producing approximately 80 per cent of Ghana’s total coconut exports and, thus, establishing itself as the country’s coconut production hub.

This year’s event is on the theme: “Invest in Ghana’s Coconut Sector for an Inclusive Climate and Social Resilience’ and supported by the Western Regional Coordinating Council (WRCC), the Ghana Export Promotion Authority (GEPA), the Tree Crop Development Authority (TCDA) and SOLIDARIDAD.

There will be a diverse array of activities, including a trade exhibition, a seminar, and mentorship sessions tailored for young individuals and women in the coconut sector.

Additionally, the programme will feature economic and technical negotiations, fostering networking opportunities among participants, and visits to coconut farms.

Ghana has factored coconut into the portfolio of the Tree Crop Development Authority (TCDA) in 2019.

The Authority has the mandate to develop and regulate the production, processing, marketing, and export of coconut and other selected tree crops.

As per statistics from the Food and Agriculture Organisation Corporate Statistical Database for 2017, Ghana is ranked 14th among the world’s foremost coconut producers, boasting a production of 383,960 metric tonnes in that year alone.

The non-traditional export figures for 2022 were indicative of the coconut sector’s substantial economic contribution.

Notably, earnings from both fresh and processed coconuts reached $US6.3 million and $US6 million, respectively.

Ghana’s export of desiccated coconut also emerged as a standout performer.

Exports in this category rose to US$21.9 million in 2021, a significant increment from US$6.3 million in 2020 and US$3.8 million in 2019, securing the nation a commendable 9th position in global desiccated coconut exports.