Nyonkopa sweeps 2 awards  at SMEGA …wins ‘SME Agro Commodity Trade’ & ‘Community Impact’ awards’

Dr. Joshy Varkey (3rd left) and other staff of Nyonkopa displaying the awards and certificates after the presentation

Nyonkopa Cocoa Buying Limited, a fully-owned subsidiary of Barry Callebaut – the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products, has been presented with two awards – the ‘SME Agro Commodity Trade’ and ‘Community Impact’ awards – at the recent SME Ghana Awards held in Accra.

The awards were in recognition of the company’s level of excellence, social commitment and vital contributions to development of businesses.

The company was presented with a plaque, a certificate of merit and a citation, which the M.D., Dr. Joshy Varkey, and Mr. Robert Asugre, Head of Sustainability, received on behalf of the company.

The SME Ghana Awards (SMEGA) is an annual National Award Scheme for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) instituted to recognise the countless achievements of Micro businesses, SMEs and individuals of entrepreneurial excellence in Ghana.

Meanwhile, the Executive Director of Quality Control of COCOBOD, Dr. Yaw Opoku, has lauded the hard work of Nyonkopa that enabled it to achieve a target of 100,000 tonnes within two years of establishment.

Dr. Opoku made these complimentary remarks at the 2ndNyonkopa Day held recently at the Elmina Beach Hotel in Elmina.

The purpose of Nyonkopa Day is to celebrate the success of last season, wherein the company did extremely well on all fronts, and also to get prepared for the coming season.

The Managing Director of Nyonkopa Cocoa Buying Limited, Dr. Joshy Varkey, in an address enumerated the many achievements and the company’s success stories from last season.

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The company did 105 K MT of cocoa and became 3rd largest LBC under COCOBOD rankings – of which 70% is certified/sustainable volume – and this the company did in 2 years of its operations, which accounts for 12% of the total cocoa volume produced in Ghana.

During the season under review, Nyonkopa won 5 Industry awards: Best Agribusiness Company from GNCCI; Best Corporate Social Responsibility Company from AGI; Best Agro Trading Company from SMEGA; Quality in Agribusiness Industry from EFG – and the company’s MD was selected as Best CEO in Agribusiness Industry by EFG and MoTI.

Nyonkopa is one of the fastest-growing companies in the country and especially in its segment. It has 474 employees on board, as well as 6,000 purchasing clerks and 850 community coordinators – all within 2 years of inception, and is actively present in over 100 cocoa districts with 74,000 registered farmers.

Apart from UTZ and RFA certifications, Nyonkopa is the only company with its own certification standards, Cocoa Horizons, and is among the largest taxpayers in the LBCs sector – all in 2 years.

The company, by introducing and implementing the community-coordinator style of functioning, Nyonkopa has generated 850 jobs for youngsters and will increase this in the coming years.

The company has paid GH₵9million as farmer premium this season under various certification programmes, and has spent approximately GH₵28million for its sustainability related activities – which include mapping, census, CLMRS, and capacity building of its farmers among others.

The company has dug 75 boreholes and started solar lighting for 2000 farmer families and 400 communities, all in just 2 years of its existence.

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Dr. Joshy Varkey with the 10 best purchasing clerks after the presentation of certificates

Nyonkopa is the only company in its segment that has pumped US$52million into the Ghanaian economy as FDI for its procurement operations.

Nyonkopa still continues with its Needy Project – wherein all employees contribute a minimum of one day’s salary – to support the farming communities in which they operate; to support orphanages, CHIPS compounds, schools among other CSR activities, and hopes to take it to higher levels by bringing the company’s purchasing clerks into the scheme from this season.

Dr. Varkey emphasised that the company will have a strategic shift from just being a procurement company to a sustainable procurement company going into the future.

“Our field team will gear-up and will be taking more roles with our farmers who are our key customers; and we will not only buy cocoa from them, but will also offer them various productivity packages, depending on their farm situations – both cocoa and non-cocoa; thereby improving yields, which are sustainable, and hence improving the farm and farmers’ health and well-being,” he stressed.

Nyonkopa Company Limited has recognised the hard work of ten purchasing clerks for the season under review. As their reward, the company will sponsor them and their spouses to fly from Kumasi to Accra and back, including hotel accommodation, to pay a familiarisation visit to the company’s factory at Tema. Mr. David Koomson was adjudged Employee of the Year 2017/2018.

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