The Political Economy Of Export Crops In Ghana: A Study Of The Mango Industry


The Ghana government in 1984 embarked on an economic recovery program where the country’s export crops were diversified and marketing liberalized. The diversification led to expansion in production and export of mango products. There has been a gap in ascertaining the impact of government agricultural policy on mango production and horticultural export crops promotion and agro-processing policy. Another gap is the limited literature on sociological contribution of commercial production of mango for export to agribusiness in Ghana. The current study which attempts to fill the vacuum examines the impact of government policy on allocation of productive resources to mango farmers, provision of extension services from multiple service sources as part of integration of mango farmers into the global market, impact of government policy on tax exemption on imported machinery, equipment and tax on profit of agro-processing companies in order to boost agro-processing industrialization in Ghana. The policies were assessed by looking at the social organization of mango production, investigation of integrating Ghanaian mango producers into the export market, and discussion of marketing mango under liberalized market and trade regime. As a study in political economy, the work examines Ghana’s export promotion policies and agricultural policy since the Fourth Republic in 1992. It also assesses the contribution of the mango industry to income of farmers, development of industries and the effect of the state’s agricultural policy on economic development. The study used dependency theory at the micro level of Ghana’s economy focusing on a dependent development perspective in assessing the development of the mango industry in the country. The study districts are Yilo Krobo District and Kintampo North Municipal Assemblies in Eastern and Brong-Ahafo Regions in Ghana. Purposive and snowballing sampling techniques were used in getting the sample interviewees. The sample size is 43, (32 mango farmers and 11 key informants) from state institutions and donor partners. In-depth primary data was collected using unstructured interview schedule. Content analysis was used for analyzing government policies on allocation of productive resources and processes of land acquisition, extension services delivery, medium of integration of farmers and skills and technical assistance to farmers. Thematic analysis was used in analyzing marketing of mango under liberalized market regime. Interpretative analysis was used in analyzing the contribution of mango industry to the Ghanaian economy and impact of agricultural policy on economic development. The findings show that a total of 404 hectares of mango farms are cultivated by the 32 mango farmers. Mango farmers in Yilo Krobo cultivated 175.2 hectares while those in Kintampo North cultivated 228.8 hectares. There were sixteen large-scale and sixteen small-scale farmers, the former cultivated 353.2 hectares of mango farms while the latter cultivated 50.3 hectares. While there were no illiterates in the mango production, farmers with secondary education have dominated. The two highest land holding systems are leasehold and usufruct with outright purchase being the least. Land acquisition is more elaborate and safe in Kintampo North than in Yilo Krobo. Farmers find it difficult to secure land title certificate from the Land Title Registry as a result of role over-lap among the Survey Department, Lands Commission and Land Title Registry. About 24 mango farmers have had credit assistance, (17) from the state and (7) from donor partners. The state institution is Export Development Investment and Agricultural Fund (EDIAF) while donor partner funds came through agencies such as GIZ and USAID. The government policy on youth in agriculture has failed in the mango industry. Government is unable to honour the promise to supply subsidized fertilizer to farmers regularly. In 2013, government owed private fertilizer companies who distributed the input to the farmers. Farmers are integrated with skills and technical assistance through farmer-based organization. The state and donor partners provided technical assistance and skill development training to farmers which enabled the farmers meet production and food safety standards and farm certification. Government constituted state agencies such as Ghana Standards Authority, Environmental Protection Authority and Plant Protection Regulatory Services Department to regulate agro-chemical use, control plant pest and diseases, and protect the health of the consumer through the determination of Minimum Residue Level of pesticides in the mango fruits. The marketing structure in the mango industry under the liberalized market and trade regime include a consortium of Agro-business and Development Managers at the regional or district levels and special marketing assistants in the local production communities. They negotiate and fix prices of mango fruits at the beginning of every harvesting season. There are three major fruit processing companies in Ghana. Mango farmers and fruit processing companies have experienced increased income and regular profit. Farmers are able to educate their children, build decent houses and provide food to their families. Blue Skies fruit processing company declared a corporate profit of £ 51.4 million in 2010. The company provides basic social amenities to the mango producing communities as their corporate social responsibility. Ghana’s state policy on the promotion of export crops in general and horticultural crops in particular has led to dependent development in the mango industry since 1992. Three main policies accounted for this phenomenon. The investment policies are GIPC Act (Act 478) and Free Zone Enterprise Act (Act 504) and the agricultural policy is Food and Agricultural Sector Development Policy (FASDEP). The policy implications of the study are that continuity in state policy despite change in government and ideologies make it possible for foreign industrialists to have confidence in investing in the fresh fruit processing sector as part of foreign direct investment in the country. Mango production has added to the portfolio of crops that created social stratification in the savannah agro-ecological zones. Liberalised system of marketing does not favour farmers in remote rural communities compared to the egalitarian system of marketing found in cocoa and sheanut sectors in Ghana. The study confirms studies by McMichael (2012) and So (1990) which argue that where state policy is directed at public private partnership and with consistency in national development ideology in the development of specific sectors then socio-economic development takes off. 

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KOFI, Y (2021). The Political Economy Of Export Crops In Ghana: A Study Of The Mango Industry. Afribary. Retrieved from

MLA 8th

KOFI, YIDU "The Political Economy Of Export Crops In Ghana: A Study Of The Mango Industry" Afribary. Afribary, 26 May. 2021, Accessed 19 Jun. 2024.


KOFI, YIDU . "The Political Economy Of Export Crops In Ghana: A Study Of The Mango Industry". Afribary, Afribary, 26 May. 2021. Web. 19 Jun. 2024. < >.


KOFI, YIDU . "The Political Economy Of Export Crops In Ghana: A Study Of The Mango Industry" Afribary (2021). Accessed June 19, 2024.