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01.02.2007 Business & Finance

Ghana to maintain premium quality cocoa

By : GNA
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The Deputy Central Regional Manager of the Quality Control Division (QCD) of the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), Mr Peter Tandoh, has reiterated that Ghana is poised to maintain the premium quality cocoa.

He said COCOBOD was working hard so that Ghana's cocoa will continue to enjoy the best premium in the international consumer market.

Speaking at a farmers rally organized by the Agona District QCD at Agona Nsaba, Mr Tandoh urged cocoa farmers to follow modern methods being offered them by extension officers to enable them produce good quality cocoa bean.

He said cocoa is the second largest export earner for the country and advised players in the industry to aim at maintaining increased production and premium quality.

Mr Tandoh said the government instituted a housing scheme for cocoa farmers nationwide as part of an incentive package to promote high production and that the scheme had taken off in the Western Region to be followed by the Central region.

He asked the farmers to ferment their cocoa with the stipulated period of six and seven days in order not to compromise on quality.

Mr Samuel Ankomah, Agona District Director of Extension Services of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MOFA), said last year, government spent ¢4 billion on the mass spraying exercise in the district, which helped to increase cocoa production.

He urged farmers to use only approved chemicals to spray their farms, saying the exercise was free and urged them not to pay money to anybody.

Mr Ankomah said this year the spraying exercise would commence in May, instead of August as it used to be in the past, and appealed to licensed buying companies to show interest in the exercise to ensure its success.

Nana Kofi Agyekum, Agona District Chief Farmer appealed to the COCOBOD to resolve a lingering issue relating to the payment of compensation for a parcel of land belonging to Nana Kweku Apotoryi.

He held that an amicable settlement of the issue would promote peace and also boost production of cocoa in the Central Region.

The District Chief Farmer warned cocoa farmers in the district to refrain from selling their produce to purchasing clerks outside the district.

Source: GNA

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