The Ghana Investment Promotion Authority (GIPC) has expressed worry over the country’s low earnings from the global chocolate industry, especially as the economy is the world’s second-largest supplier of cocoa beans.
Data from the Financial Times show that less than US$2billion of the total US$130billion from the world chocolate industry goes to Ghana. This represents just 1.3 percent of the global chocolate industry’s worth. Meanwhile, the retail market value of chocolate is expected to grow to US$189.89billion by 2026, the Sustainable Commodities Marketplace Series has projected.
The Ghana Investment Promotion Centre CEO, Mr. Yofi Grant – addressing dignitaries and participants at the maiden edition of the Chocolatarium Business Summit in Accra, said this provides an enormous opportunity for local chocolate manufacturers to grow, as the potential of Ghana’s chocolate industry remains untapped.
He said the current rising demand for healthy and specialised chocolates globally must guide local small-scale processors to do something different to establish a foothold in the global market.
“The demand for chocolate is on the rise, with an increasing awareness pertaining to its nutritional and health benefits. This means chocolate-demand is anticipated to increase in the subsequent years. To cater for this, Ghanaian chocolate manufacturing companies have a responsibility to meet the demands of not only local consumers but also global patrons,” he said.
Presently, there is a keen focus on specialty cocoa for chocolate production on the international market. Internationally, specialty cocoa is described as one with good traceability, good genetics, unique origins (terroir), good harvest and post-harvest techniques, higher quality, and certification.
Mr. Grant therefore maintained that the global demand for premium chocolate is an opportunity window to build a sustainable chocolate manufacturing industry in Ghana that is highly competitive and able to secure a larger share of the revenue accrued on the global market.
To strategically expand the chocolate manufacturing industry in Ghana, GIPC said the relevance of investments cannot be undermined.
“It comes with a collection of tangible and intangible assets which are considerably notable for sustaining businesses and economies. Primarily, investors look out for an industry with a large market size and assess its current position and ability to generate the required revenue.
“Fortunately for Ghana, the robust nature of the global chocolate processing and manufacturing industry requires high volumes of cocoa beans. This presents an enormous opportunity to all stakeholders involved in the value chain to play a vital role in undertaking operations in the industry,” he said.
Chocolate, which has remained the largest product consumed in the cocoa value chain – accounting for 43 percent of all cocoa in 2017, with a retail market value of US$106.19billion the same year.
While Ghana remains a well-known source for producing cocoa on the world market as the second largest supplier, accounting for almost 30 percent of the total global supply (Ivory Coast – 40 percent), stakeholders have consistently expressed worry about the inadequate revenue generated from local cocoa processing.