Ghana, officially the Republic of Ghana, is a country located along the Gulf of Guinea and Atlantic Ocean, in the subregion of West Africa. Spanning a land mass of 238,535 sq km (92,099 sq mi), Ghana is bordered by the Ivory Coast in the west, Burkina Faso in the north, Togo in the east and the Gulf of Guinea and Atlantic Ocean in the south. Ghana is inhabited by over 28 million people.
Ghana is the second largest producer of cocoa. The country produces a variety of crops in various climatic zones which range from dry savanna to wet forest and which run in eastwest bands across the country. However, despite its importance, sectoral growth has lagged behind other sectors of the economy and has been unpredictable, as most farming is reliant upon rainwater. The removal of subsidies on fertilizers and other agricultural inputs has also had an effect on several crops. Although most of the year-to-year trends are attributable to weather patterns, the longer term improvement in performance can be attributed to public policy changes. As part of the broader macroeconomic reforms the government has removed food price controls , raised cocoa prices paid to producers, and boosted extension services, which help increase farmer productivity. The lack of government financial support again put subsistence producers at a disadvantage.
The Ghanaian climate is suitable for market gardening, which is destined to the internal and external market.
The climate of Ghana is tropical, but temperatures vary with season and elevation. Except in the north two rainy seasons occur, from April to July and from September to November. In the north the rainy season begins in April and lasts until September. Annual rainfall ranges from about 1,100 mm in the north to about 2,100 mm in the southeast. The harmattan, a dry desert wind, blows from the northeast from December to March, lowering the humidity and creating hot days and cool nights in the north. In the south the effects of the harmattan are felt in January. In most areas the highest temperatures occur in March, the lowest in August.
The dominant agricultural sector is cocoa, it is cultivated in the centre of the country, from the Ashanti plateau to the Volta basin. Cocoa is cultivated in the centre of the country, from the Ashanti plateau to the Volta basin. Cocoa producers are mostly small farmers. The main cash crops are cocoa, palm oil and fruit. Marginal cash crops are coconut, rubber, cashew, cotton, coffee and horticulture. The country produces bananas, pineapples, oranges, mangoes and papayas. Food crops include cassava, yam, taro, plantain, maize, sorghum and rice. These do not allow food self-sufficiency and Ghana has to import rice to meet its domestic needs.