Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) has signed an agreement with Bühler of Switzerland, one of the world’s biggest cocoa processing and chocolate making companies, to process more of Ghana’s cocoa.
As part of the agreement, Ghana will also benefit through training, product development and technology guidance to build its local capacity in cocoa processing and value addition to meet both domestic and international consumption demands.
Speaking at the signing ceremony, which was held on 20th June 2021, at Bühler’s Cocoa Competence Centre in Abidjan, Joseph Boahen Aidoo, the Chief Executive of COCOBOD, said the agreement will deepen the strong relationship Ghana already has with Switzerland, both of which are significant players in the world’s cocoa trade environment.
Bühler is one of the top-class organisations in the world when it comes to chocolate technology, Mr. Boahen Aidoo acknowledged, and “we in Ghana, having begun a journey on the path of transformation in our cocoa sector have been looking out for such partnerships to aid us in that process.”
“We want to move from the traditional cocoa production to a modern way of cocoa production. We also want to move from the supply of the mere primary commodity to value addition and that is where we find you to be a potential partner, “the COCOBOD boss said.
He added that Ghana needs to build its capacity to add value to the cocoa it produces and that means acquiring the latest technologies for efficient processing as well as chocolate and other cocoa product development.
“You have the technology, and we need the technology, so, we want to work together. This partnership that we are forging today should continue to grow into the future and remain beneficial to the mutual interest of Ghana and Switzerland”, he mentioned.
In his response, Heiko Feuring, the President of Bühler Middle East and Africa commended the leadership of Mr. Boahen Aidoo and the management of COCOBOD towards building a sustainable and prosperous cocoa value chain for Ghana through the introduction of farming improvement activities and the implementation of the Living Income Differential (LID).
“We hope this memorandum of understanding will be the landmark of a new fruitful and long-lasting collaboration to unlock the Ghanaian cocoa value chain potential”, he said.
“We want to support Ghana in its march towards a higher value creation in the country for the benefit of all Ghanaians”, he further said.
He gave the assurance that Bühler will offer its expertise to Ghana in aid of the effort to build a solid local processing industry to capture a higher share of the $100 billion cocoa and chocolate industry.