The Association of Shea Buyers and Sellers in the Northern Region is waging a war against AAk Ghana (known as Kasajan), for unfair pricing of the commodity that is affecting their livelihoods and women shea pickers.
They accused the company which is a major buyer of deliberately fixing the shea price to (one cedi, eighty pesewas a kilo – instead of two cedis a kilo), without broader consultations and by using its huge logistics base at its advantage to dictate the market price in order to push others out of the industry..
At a short press encounter in Tamale, jointly address by Abdul Rahim Safianu, Vice-chair and Salifu Abdul Rashid Chirifobia, Secretary of the Sheanut Buyers and Sellers, the Association questioned why the shea commodity should now be selling at 6 cedis (a bowl) in the villages and same commodity, offered at four cedis at markets in Tamale?
“This is an indication that something isn’t right and needs urgent fixing” they argued.
“First and foremost, one of the companies (A.A.K Ghana) has come out with a price for the sheanuts business in the north, which is alien to the association members in the north. It is clear the price out there will add more suffering to the poor women in the rural areas due to lack of transportation by these local women to the market centre for sale, he noted stating further that these are deliberate attempts by the company to discourage the performance of local companies in the five regions,” Salifu Abdul Rashid Chirifobia, Secretary of the Shea aggregators noted.
The association thus appealed to Traditional rulers, the Trades Ministry, Parliament and other stakeholders particularly the Sheanut Board to help save the situation before it escalates.
Sheanuts, also known as the “Cocoa of the North,” is widely found in the Savanna Ecological Zone and has huge potentials in both local and international markets, – (cosmetics and food industry) yet the Shea, is one commodity that is bedeviled with several challenges which has resulted in exploitation, growing poverty and inequality among those in the value chain.
Story By: Nelson Nyadror Adanuti