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The authoritative cocoa map for Ghana

"The Forestry Commission of Ghana and our partner agencies are now in a much stronger position to determine progress towards the Cocoa & Forests Initiative objectives and other international commitments and initiatives.”
Yakubu Mohammed, The Ghana Forestry Commission

The Ghana Forest Compliance Service was officially adopted as the land use map provider for monitoring the CFI in Ghana at the CFI Ghana Oversight Committee Meeting on 16 June 2022. The Ghana Forestry Commission, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology and Ecometrica, have come together to offer this service following a strong institutional partnership which was forged during the Forests 2020 programme. 

Read the blog on how Ghana Forest Compliance Service was adopted as the official land-use map provider for CFI Ghana here on the World Cocoa Foundation website.

 

The Ghana Forestry Commission (GFC) is the national entity responsible for monitoring the state of forests in Ghana. The technical wing of the GFC, the Resource Management and Support Centre (RMSC) is responsible for the creation, maintenance and updates to the Ghana National-land use map and providing other authoritative data to support monitoring responsible sourcing. 

 

The Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) is responsible for assisting the RMSC with technical advice, quality assurance and stakeholder/community engagement on the data that is included in the Ghana Forest Compliance Service for Export Commodities. 

 

Ecometrica provides the digital infrastructure that enables the Ghana Forest Compliance Service to operate. The Ecometrica Mapping Platform allows users to extract advanced geospatial information for areas of interest using querying and dashboarding functionality. 

 

The partnership evolved from the Forests 2020 project, which was funded by the UK Space Agency, where the GFC, KNUST and Ecometrica completed technical work to improve Ghana’s land-use mapping and developed mechanisms for the data to be used for supply chain compliance monitoring. 

Developing the land-use map

Ghana is the second largest global exporter of cocoa (after Côte D’Ivoire). One of the major challenges Ghanaian partners faced was monitoring the commodities versus the forest landscape in Ghana.

Cocoa is grown both under tree shade (agroforest cocoa) as well as grown under sun (monocropped cocoa). Therefore satellite data alone is not enough to accurately monitor all the cocoa farms.

As part of Forests 2020, a project by a consortium of UK experts and international partners led by Ecometrica Limited, a land use map was developed.

The map was produced by the Ghana Forestry Commission using local expertise - teams on the ground essentially mapping and recording every cocoa farm and the surrounding vegetation -  along with satellite imagery from Sentinel-1 satellite, in combination with optical data collected from Sentinel-2 satellite, as well as machine learning.

Forests 2020 is grant-funded by the UK Space Agency’s International Partnership Programme (IPP), part of the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF).

Leading Mapping in West Africa

The resulting land-use map is one of the most accurate (approx 90%) maps of cocoa growing in the world and crucially is able to differentiate between monocropped and agroforestry cocoa.

The Ghanaian Forestry Commission worked closely with the Kwame Nkrumah, University of Science and Technology and the University of Leicester, to create a land map that enables cocoa farms to be monitored nationally.

Investment channelled back into Ghana
A key benefit of the service is that it places the control and expertise of the mapping service within Ghana rather than being imposed from outside.

Financial benefits from the service are shared with data providing partners, enabling investment in the Ghana Forestry Commission map maintenance and update cycles, thereby creating a commercially sustainable monitoring and mapping system.