The Chief Executive Officer of Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), Joseph Boahen Aidoo, has said that the company’s current interest is to pursue processing and develop the artisanal processing of chocolate.
He indicated that the processing industry generated more revenue in cocoa across the world.
At this year’s Managers’ Conference organised by Olam Food Ingredients (OFI) Ghana Limited, a supplier of cocoa ingredients and the foremost exporter of cashew in the industry, Mr. Aidoo encouraged the leadership of OFI to expand its processing facility — Olam Cocoa Processing at Kaase — or consider building a new factory in Accra.
He said the government had shown commitment to strengthening the industry through the rehabilitation of cocoa farms, the distribution of subsidised fertilisers to farmers, and the cocoa hand-pollination exercise, among other efforts.
Mr. Aidoo said the benefits of cocoa to the health of society were many, and hence it behooved on stakeholders to ensure the sustainability of the crop.
He said the cocoa swollen shoot disease had affected a lot of farms in the Western North Region and urged managers to be innovative in their teachings and interactions with farmers on good agricultural practices in promoting cocoa yield.
The five-day programme brought together over 400 managers from across the company’s operational areas, as well as industry players to discuss trends, challenges, and developments in the cocoa sector and how OFI could maximise its operations to increase value for its stakeholders.
It also discussed industry dynamics and best practices for a sustainable cocoa industry.
The event was dubbed: “To be the Change for Good Food and a Healthy Future”.
The conference ended with an Excellence Awards ceremony to recognise outstanding employees.
Other activities for the conference included sports and a medical screening exercise.
The Country Head of OFI, Eric Asare-Botwe, commended the team for the hard work in the previous season even in the face of challenges.
He assured employees of continued support to bolster their efforts in ensuring that OFI maintained its position as the leading licensed buying company in Ghana’s cocoa sector in the 2022/23 season.