Revamping Ghana’s coffee production: smallholder perceptions, viability and constraints

Main Article Content

C.A. Wongnaa
F. Adams
N.P. Tempia
A.B. Benjamin
B.N.Y. Charles
G. Sandra


Coffee contributes substantially to the economic wellbeing of smallholder farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa, but the production of this crop in Ghana remains underdeveloped and its great potential for enhancing the livelihoods of smallholder farmers remains unrealized. This study analyzed the viability of coffee plantation establishment to ascertain whether observed low coffee production in Ghana is because the production of the crop is financially and economically not viable. The primary data was collected from 133 coffee farmers and 150 non-coffee farmers using structured questionnaires. The analysis was conducted using the Perception index, discounted measures of project worth as well as Kendall’s coefficient of concordance. The results indicated that both coffee and non-coffee farmers have negative perceptions about coffee production in the country. Furthermore, coffee production in Ghana would be both financially [net present value (NPV) of GH¢ 1,437.19, benefit-cost ratio (BCR) of 1.39, and internal rate of returns (IRR) of 29.15%] and economically (NPV of GH¢ 697.86, BCR of 1.16, and IRR of 25.38%) viable at a discount rate of 30%. Finally, a poor marketing system was ranked as the major constraint to coffee production in Ghana. The study makes the following recommendations: Firstly, farmers and potential investors are encouraged to invest in coffee production in Ghana as an option to enhance their livelihoods. Secondly, policies aimed at addressing the challenges of coffee farmers in Ghana should be targeted more at establishing a viable internal coffee marketing system as well as lowering lending rate to farmers.


Download data is not yet available.

Article Details

Research Article


Adams, F., K. Amankwah, C.A. Wongnaa, E.P. Honny, D.K. Peters, B.J. Asamoah and B.B. Coffie. 2019. Financial analysis of small-scale mango chips processing in Ghana. Cogent Food Agric. 5(1): 1679701.

Adu-Gyamerah, E. 2015. Coffee cultivation picks up country wide. Graphic Online. Available Source: January 1, 2018.

Alvarado, E. 2013. Cost-benefit Analysis of an Agricultural Project Involving a Smallholder Production System. MS Thesis, McGill University, Montreal, Canada.

Amanor, K.S. 2017. Globalization, Agribusiness and the Liberalization of Agricultural Services in Ghana. In: A.M. Buainain, M. Rocha de Souza and Z. Navarro, (Eds), Globalization and Agriculture: Redefining Unequal Development. Lanham MD: Lexington Books, Lanham, USA.

Asamoah, M. 2015. Utilization of cocoa farm management practices by small-scale farmers: the pressure of socio-cultural factors. International Journal of Innovation and Research in Educational Sciences. 2(1): 17–21.

Beierlein, J.G., K.C. Schneeberger and D.D. Osbur. 2013. Principles of Agribusiness Management. Waveland Press Inc., Illinois, USA.

Bellachew, B. 2011. Some Impressions on the State of Coffee Sector in Ghana (Field Visit Report). Travel Report No7. Inter African Coffee Organization, Abidjan.

Björnsdóttir, A.R. 2010. Financial Feasibility Assessments: Building and Using Assessment Models for Financial Feasibility Analysis of Investment Projects. PhD Thesis, University of Iceland, Reykjavík, Iceland.

COCOBOD (The Ghana Cocoa Board). 2019. Ghana Cocoa Board Intervention. Available Source: February 15, 2018.

Crumley, M.L. 2013. The price of liberalization: smallholder coffee producers in the era of globalization. Mediterr. Q. 24(3): 102–128.

George, D. and P. Mallery. 2016. Reliability analysis, pp. 245–256. In: IBM SPSS Statistics 23 Step by Step: A Simple Guide and Reference. 14th Edition. Routledge, Oxfordshire, UK.

Ghana Statistical Service. 2010. Population and Housing Census. Regional Analytical Report. Ghana.

Gittinger, J.P. 1982. Economic Analysis of Agricultural Projects (World Bank). 2nd Edition. The Johns Hopkins University Press, Maryland, USA.

Harris, E., A.R. Abdul-Aziz and R.K. Avuglah. 2012. Modeling annual coffee production in Ghana using ARIMA time series model. Int. J. Bus. Soc. Res. 2(7): 175–186.

Hill, R.V. and M. Vigneri. 2014. Mainstreaming gender sensitivity in cash crop market supply chains, pp. 315–341. In: A. Quisumbing, R. Meinzen-Dick, T. Raney, A. Croppenstedt, J. Behrman and A. Peterman, (Eds), Gender in Agriculture. Springer, Dordrecht.

ICO (International Coffee Organization). 2018. Country Coffee Profile: Ghana. International Coffee Council. 122nd Session. 17–21 September 2018, London, UK.

International Trade Centre. 2016. Trade statistics for international business development. Available Source: April 18, 2018.

Jari, B. 2009. Institutional and Technical Factors Influencing Agricultural Marketing Channel Choices Amongst Smallholder and Emerging Farmers in the Kat River Valley. MS Thesis, Faculty of Science and Agriculture, University of Fort Hare, Alice, South Africa.

Kleemann, L. and A. Abdulai. 2013. Organic certification, agro-ecological practices and return on investment: evidence from pineapple producers in Ghana. Ecol. Econ. 93: 330–341.

Kleemann, L., A. Abdulai and M. Buss. 2014. Certification and access to export markets: adoption and return on investment of organic-certified pineapple farming in Ghana. World Dev. 64: 79–92.

Krishnan, S. 2017. Sustainable coffee production. In: Oxford Research Encyclopedias, Environmental Science.

Kwasi-Kumah, A.A. 2012. Company helping to revamp coffee industry. Ghana News Agency. Available Source: January 18, 2018.

Loureiro, M.L. and J. Lotade. 2005. Do fair trade and eco-labels in coffee wake up the consumer conscience? Ecol. Econ. 53(1): 129–138.

MOFA (Ministry of Food and Agriculture). 2018. Agriculture in Ghana: Facts and Figures (2017). Statistics, Research and Information Directorate (SRID), Accra, Ghana.

Mujawamariya, G., M. D’Haese and S. Speelman. 2013. Exploring double side-selling in cooperatives, case study of four coffee cooperatives in Rwanda. Food Policy. 39: 72–83.

Omari, S. 2014. Assessing farmers’ knowledge of effects of agrochemical use on human health and the environment: a case study of Akuapem South Municipality, Ghana. Int. J. Appl. Sci. Eng. Res. 3(2): 402–410.

Onumah, J.A., R.M. Al-Hassan and E.E. Onumah. 2013. Productivity and technical efficiency of cocoa production in Eastern Ghana. J. Econ. Sustain. Dev. 4(4): 106–117.

Pannell, D.J. 1997. Sensitivity analysis of normative economic models: theoretical framework and practical strategies. Agric. Econ. 16(2): 139–152.

Philpott, S.M., P. Bichier, R. Rice and R. Greenberg. 2007. Field‐testing ecological and economic benefits of coffee certification programs. Conserv. Biol. 21(4): 975–985.

Poudel, K.L., A.P. Nepal, B. Dhungana, Y. Sugimoto, N. Yamamoto and A. Nishiwaki. 2009. Capital budgeting analysis of organic coffee production in Gulmi district of Nepal. In: Proceedings of the International Association of Agricultural Economists. Beijing, China.

Rahn, E., P. Läderach, M. Baca, C. Cressy, G. Schroth, D. Malin, H. van Rikxoort and J. Shriver. 2014. Climate change adaptation, mitigation and livelihood benefits in coffee production: where are the synergies? Mitig. Adapt. Strateg. Glob. Change. 19: 1119–1137.

Ruben, R. and R. Fort. 2012. The impact of fair trade certification for coffee farmers in Peru. World Dev. 40(3): 570–582.

Saltelli, A., M. Ratto, T. Andres, F. Campolongo, J. Cariboni, D. Gatelli, M. Saisana and S. Tarantola. 2008. Global Sensitivity Analysis. The Primer. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., West Sussex, England.

Sereke-Brhan, H. 2010. Coffee, Culture, and Intellectual Property: Lessons for Africa from the Ethiopian Fine Coffee Initiative. Frederick S. Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer-Range Future, Boston University, Massachusetts, USA.

Traoré, D. 2009. Cocoa and Coffee Value Chains in West and Central Africa: Constraints and Options for Revenue-Raising Diversification. AAACP Paper Series No.3. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome, Italy.

Tumusiime-Mutebile, E. 2013. The challenge of modernizing smallholder agriculture in East Africa. In: Proceedings of the International Symposium on Agricultural Developments in the EAC Partner States. Kampala, Uganda.

van Rijn, F. and V. Ingram. 2016. Improving Sustainability in Coffee and Cocoa. Wageningen University & Research, Netherlands.

Wongnaa, C.A. and D. Awunyo-Vitor. 2013. Profitability analysis of cashew production in Wenchi municipality in Ghana. Bots. J. Agric. Appl. Sci. 9(1): 21–31.

Wongnaa, C.A., M. Nyarko, M. Addison and D. Awunyo-Vitor. 2021. Viability of artisanal timber milling: cases from Ghana. Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy.

Xaba, B.G. and M.B. Masuku. 2013. Factors affecting the choice of marketing channel by vegetable farmers in Swaziland. Sustain. Agric. Res. 2(1): 112–123.

Zaney, G.D. 2011. Coffee industry to assume rightful position. Information Services Department, Ministry of Information, Ghana. Available Source: January 18, 2018.