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18.01.2005 Regional News

Chief farmer urges cocoa farmers to ferment beans well

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Bonkwaso (Ash), Jan 18, GNA - Cocoa farmers at Bonkwaso, a major cocoa producing area in the Ahafo-Ano South district of Ashanti have been advised to attach great importance to the fermentation of their produce to avoid the incidence of purple beans.

Nana C.Y. Donkor, the chief farmer for the area, said apart from affecting Ghana's cocoa on the international market, the purple beans menace could also render the toil of the farmers unprofitable since their produce would be rejected by the Licensed Buying Companies (LBCs). He was addressing a cross section of cocoa farmers who had collected their bonus for the 2003/2004 season, at Bonkwaso last Friday. He therefore, urged the farmers to adhere strictly to the Quality Control Division's directive to ferment the beans for a maximum of six days before drying.

Nana Donkor commended the government for assisting cocoa farmers with insecticides and appealed for the intensification of the mass cocoa spraying exercise in the area to boost the morale of the farmers.

Mr. Joe Kwarteng, Marketing Clerk of the Produce Buying Company (PBC), assured the farmers that the company would continue to offer excellent transactions with them.

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