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03.01.2005 Business & Finance

Government advised to ensure only quality cocoa purchases

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Kumasi, Jan. 3, GNA - An appeal has been made to the Government to put in place more pragmatic measures to completely stop the purchase of poor quality cocoa beans by some recalcitrant purchasing clerks of Licensed Buying Companies (LBC).

Mr. Peter Dabanka, District Chief Farmer of Asankarekwa and the Odikro of Nyame Nnae in the Western Region, who made the appeal said some purchasing clerks had resorted to collaborating with lazy farmers who did not dry their cocoa beans well, to purchase such beans. Mr. Dabanka made the appeal in a briefing with the Press in Kumasi at the weekend on the situation regarding production and purchase of the cocoa produced in the Asankarekwa area.

He said because of the desire to make quick money the farmers resorted to selling off such poor cocoa beans while the purchasing clerks also willingly accepted to buy the poor quality cocoa because they were paid on commission basis.

Mr. Dabanka noted that such unhealthy practices were undermining government efforts at exporting only quality cocoa beans and could impede the reputation of Ghana as a quality cocoa producing country. He advised such selfish purchasing clerks and cocoa farmers to desist from such acts since they impact negatively on the economy and innocent farmers.

Mr. Dabanka suggested to the Government to establish a training institution to equip purchasing clerks with relevant skills on how to discern good from bad cocoa beans and to also instil in them an affection and commitment to procuring only good cocoa beans. He commended the Government for the mass cocoa spraying exercise and the hi-tech fertilizer introduced to cocoa farmers and appealed for sustenance of the exercise in view of its benefit to the farmers.

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