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Business News of Friday, 31 December 2010

Source: GNA

COCOBOD vows to protect the integrity of Ghana's cocoa

Manfo, (Ash), Dec. 31, GNA - The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) has vowe= d not to compromise the integrity of the country as the number one quality cocoa producer in the world. It will therefore not accept the smuggling of cocoa from its troubled neighbour, Cote d' Ivoire. Mr Anthony Fofie, the Chief Executive, said this at a farmers' forum at Manfo in the Ahafo-Ano North District on Thursday. This was his first visit to the area, rated the second highest cocoa producing district in the country, to interact and share ideas with the farmers on how to increase crop yield and maintain the quality of the beans= .. Mr Fofie said Ghana's cocoa served as a benchmark in the world in ter= ms of quality and there was the need for all stakeholders to jealously protect it from any adulteration. He said the Board had taken some initiatives to help farmers to increas= e production and appealed to them to make maximum use of the hi-tech cocoa seedlings and fertilizers. He said the Board would, additionally, continue with the rehabilitation of roads in cocoa growing areas and appealed to district assemblies to take keen interest in development projects implemented by the Board in their areas to prevent shoddy job by contractors.

The National President of the Ghana Cocoa, Coffee and Shea-nut Farmers Association, Alhaji Alhassan Bukari, thanked the government for increasing the producer price of cocoa. He, however, expressed concern about the way some purchasing clerks wer= e cheating farmers and said the Association acting in concert with the COCOBO= D had imported weight stones for the farmers' societies to help farmers to know the exact weight of their cocoa even before they take these to the sal= e points. Mr David Addai Amankwah, District Chief Executive for Ahafo-Ano North, appealed to the Board to step up efforts at helping to rehabilitate the bad roads in the district's cocoa growing communities. Nana Kwame Ntim II, Omanhene of Manso, said despite its high cocoa production, the area lacked many social amenities and called for increased development assistance to improve the living conditions of the people. 31 Dec 10

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