During his tour the president of the republic did announce that the price of groundnuts will be put at D32,000 per tonne. In the past the farmers were told that it is not government’s responsibility to determine the price of groundnuts. It was claimed that GGC and its partners were responsible to determine the price. Foroyaa is investigating how much money is in the hands of the National Food Security Processing and Market Corporation (GGC) to be able to purchase the groundnuts cultivated by Gambian farmers.
Last year 40,000 tonnes were purchased at D28000 per tonne. The cost of fertiliser was D700 per bag. This season the cost of fertiliser is D2000 per bag which is almost three times the cost of fertiliser whilst the price of groundnut increased by only D4000 dalasi per tonne which is the price of two bags of fertiliser.
It is very clear that there is a need to look at the groundnut trade from an objective point of view. Gambians with low level of technology and small population used to produce and over 100,000 tonnes per annum were purchased and it was linked to a booming processing of the nuts into a booming oil processing industry yielding groundnut cake which earned the country huge sums of foreign exchange. How the country lost this edge has to be examined and how to regain that edge should be a matter of priority. We will examine where GGC is going to get the money to purchase the nuts.