Skip to content
Cocoa & Forests Initiative

“This year, we are hoping to receive 700 additional multipurpose tree seedlings to plant in our farms and the community."

In farming areas, trees contribute largely to improving the weather condition in their immediate environment. Trees provide favorable conditions for other crops, help wildlife to thrive, increase productivity, and boost economic growth. Planting agroforestry shade trees increases the general crop health and the yield of the cocoa plant, thus helping cocoa farmers to manage their farms sustainably and more profitably.

Despite these widely known advantages, there is still a wrong perception among some farmers that trees only take up space in cocoa farms and do not have any clear economic advantages. This perception makes a lot of cocoa farmers reluctant to plant trees in their farms. Contrary to this, a group of female farmers in the Ashanti Region of Ghana are imparting change.

In Old Akrofuom, a small village in the Ashanti Region of Ghana, some young women in a Village Savings and Loans Association (VSLA) for Women-In-Cocoa-Farming have taken up the initiative of planting trees in their farms and the community.

Madam Ernestina Appiah, the Chairperson for the women group, said she has planted over 60 trees in her 3 hectares of cocoa farms and in a small field at home. “Initially the idea was to reduce the effects of heat related hazards on the cocoa plantation. Today, we enjoy improved air quality and significant reduction in heat-related illnesses in our community”, she said.

Madam Ernestina Appiah indicated that the group of young cocoa farmers have planted and nurtured over 600 tree nurseries they received over the past few years. Planting these trees has helped to control soil erosion in the farms while attracting wildlife, and increasing biodiversity in the area. This, among many of the environmental and economic benefits of agroforestry, have increased the yield of the cocoa plantation and the profitability of their farms. This has reflected significantly in the increased contributions from members in the Village Savings and Loans Association.

“This year, we are hoping to receive 700 additional multipurpose tree seedlings to plant in our farms and the community. We are happy to be doing our bit in the fight against climate change,” she added.

Related Resources

Read all

Back to top