Suhum, Feb. 18, GNA - Kuapa Kokoo Limited, a licensed cocoa buying company, bought a total of 64,975 metric tons of cocoa in the 2003/4 cocoa seasons and earned profit of 967 million cedis. The profit margin represented a 40 per cent increment over that of the previous season.
The Managing Director of the Kumasi-based company, Mr Kwabena Ohemeng-Tinyase, announced this at the 11th delegates' conference/general meeting at Suhum on Wednesday.
The meeting was on the theme: "Sustaining quality in the cocoa industry, the role of the farmer."
Mr Tinyase said in line with its expansion programme, the company increased its area of operations from 19 to 27 while, its societies rose from 890 to 1,124 with a membership of 48,854.
To enhance its storage facilities, Mr Ohemeng-Tinyase said the company had started putting up transit warehouses at various locations, including Tema and Takoradi.
He said to enhance the empowerment of its members, the company had drawn up training programmes, including gender for women, alternative livelihood projects involving grasscutter and snail rearing and agro-forestry.
Mr Ohemeng-Tinyase who expressed concern about the recent incidence of purple colouration on cocoa beans, asked the members to educate their colleagues on good production practices to ensure that the nation retained premium on its cocoa on the international market. He announced that the company was collaborating with the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology to established a rural health scheme for farmers.
It was also supporting the children of needy farmers, as well as the Kumasi orphanage home, the Westphalian Orphanage Village at Juaben and Ashan Orphanage at Danase.
The President of the Kuapa Kokoo Farmers Union, Nana Kojo Appiah-Kubi, said the company had completed the construction of day-care centres at Apedwa and Sankare in the Eastern and Brong Ahafo Region, respectively.
He announced that in appreciation of the singular role of Tetteh Quarshie in the introduction of cocoa into Ghana, the company had decided to sponsor a member of his family from basic to tertiary level of education as from this year.
Nana Apiah-Kubi commended the government for paying cocoa farmers annual bonuses and also for launching the mass-spraying programme, among other incentives.
In an address read on his behalf, the acting Eastern Regional Deputy Minister, Mr Gustav Narh-Dometey, commended the company for exhibiting good example of how local farmers could work together to improve their lot given the right environment.