A Senior Public Relations Officer at the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), Mr David Asare Oduro has hinted that in about five years, the consumption of cocoa has moved from 0.5 per cent to 58 per cent even though the country’s targets that in a few years to come, the consumption of cocoa products will shoot up to 1kg per an individual in a year.
He indicated that their target was to hit 1kg in the next few years and that by the end of the year, everyone would have taken something that had been produced out of cocoa.
Mr Oduro who was speaking on Atinka TV’s Morning Show attributed the rise to the introduction of the National Cocoa Week celebration which was gaining roots in the country now.
He hinted that the promotion of chocolate since the inception of the National Chocolate Day has encouraged most manufacturing companies to come on board and support the course.
When asked if Ghana has enough finished products and will not depend on imports, he said the local companies were also doing well to produce enough for the people and added that there were enough cocoa products at the newly opened Chocolate City, as all processors were invited to showcase their products.
Mr Oduro said on Tuesday when the Chocolate City was opened, a lot of Ghanaians have visited the shop and therefore urged all to pass through it as the company aims at getting more people to consume cocoa products moving forward.
He further hinted that the consumption of cocoa products in Ghana per individual yearly has increased and that the per capita consumption of chocolate products in Ghana was 0.5 per cent yearly compelling the company to support companies that need cocoa beans to produce more chocolate.
He also said the company was encouraging foreign companies that produce cocoa to come to Ghana to set up factories to also create employment for the youth.
He added that currently, Ghana has twelve (12) cocoa processing companies, while others were also doing it in smaller sizes and expressed the hope that there would be enough finished products and will not depend on imports, since the local companies were doing well to produce enough for the people.
He explained that Ghanaians loved Valentine and for that matter, loved to share chocolate on that day hence the decision to use the day to promote the consumption of cocoa products.
According to him, most companies in the world used Ghana’s cocoa to produce chocolate, hence the day promotes chocolate in general irrespective of where it was produced.
However, he urged the Ghanaian public not to wait for the month of February before they consume chocolate.
He observed that a section of the public wait till Valentine’s Day before they either share or buy chocolate and underscored the need to consume cocoa products due to its health benefits.
“We always do not have to wait till when it is getting to February that we will eat cocoa products, we have to take it continuously,” he said.