Nyonkopa Cocoa Buying Limited a subsidiary company of Barry Callebaut, the world leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products has paid a of GH¢ 8,839.993 as premium to farmers at separate durbars this year for sustainable cocoa production.
As a tradition of the Horizon program, all trained and certified farmers are paid a premium on every kilogram of cocoa they produce for going the extra mile in ensuring cocoa is sustainable.
At a farmers’ durbar held at Goaso in the Brong Ahafo region, the head of the sustainability programs in Ghana Mr. Robert Asugre, reiterated the company’s commitment to lift thousands of cocoa farmers from poverty by the year 2025.
He also indicated that Barry Callebaut is poised to source all its ingredients sustainably by 2025 and will soon operationalize its Forever Chocolate program in Ghana.
“Our ambition goes beyond sustainable cocoa. It is the next step in our long history of investing in a sustainable supply chain” he added.
He thrusted on Cocoa Horizon program , Company’s in-house sustainability initiative. An amount GH¢ 3,516,789.20 is already paid out to the farmers, in a function held at Dunkwa by the Managing Director Dr. Joshy Varkey and team to the Chief farmer Nana Brentou Francis.
The premium paid is to benefit over 30,000 farmers registered under the Company UTZ Certification program.
The function was attended by various officials of COCOBOD, AGI, SMEGA, Traditional and District Authorities of the Upper Denkyira East District Assembly.
In an address the Deputy Director of Cocoa Health and Extension Division of COCOBOD Rev. Dr. Emmanuel Ahia Clottey said Nyonkopa Cocoa Buying limited sustainability objectives are in line with government policies to sustain the industry especially in areas of cocoa rehabilitations and pollination to revamp the industry.
The Gyaasehene of Dunkwa Nana EdunyaWadie III who represented the Dunkwa Traditional Council expressed their satisfaction with the Nyonkopa Cocoa Buying Limited operations in the areas and asked for extension of the Company’s developmental projects to the other numerous cocoa communities in the traditional area.
Through participatory training and learning models including Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), Good Environmental practices (GEP) and Good Social Practices (GSP), increased crop productivity and higher incomes are achieved by the participating farmers.
The program is also developing farmers’ capacity as agro entrepreneurs who are now taking up farming as serious business.
The Community development projects which started in communities under these program include; Community water system, Community Street lights , Household solar lamps, Teaching Materials Support, Mosquito nets (Nyonkopa Life Nets) supply and a Nyonkodo Farmer Pension Scheme.
The community development projects will benefit over 47,000 farmers in 810 communities in the 36 Districts in the Brong Ahafo, Ashanti, Eastern and Central regions where the Cocoa Horizon Program is being implemented.
According to the Managing Director, Dr. Joshy Varkey; the company will be utilizing GH¢ 8 million Ghana cedis on the above projects. “Nyonkopa is the only company which runs a pension, insurance and scholarship to its loyal farmers and families in the cocoa industry of Ghana for free” he stressed.
An amount of GH¢ 5,323,203.50 was paid out to the farmers, in a function held at Goaso by the Managing Director and team to the Chief farmer Mr. Emmanuel Asana. This will also benefit 47,000 farmers.
The function was attended by various officials of COCOBOD, Traditional and Municipal Authorities of the Asunafo North Municipality. In an address by the Municipal Chief Executive, Hon. Yaw Boahen said Nyonkopa Cocoa Buying limited sustainability objectives are line with government policies to sustain the industry.
He indicated that government is embarking on a national pruning and hand pollination project to help maintain cocoa farms and make them very productive.
The Odikro of Yaw Krakrom Nana Appiah-Kubiwho represented the Goaso Traditional Council expressed their gratefulness with the Nyonkopa Cocoa Buying limited operations in the areas and asked for extension of the Company’s developmental projects to the other numerous cocoa communities in the traditional area.
The Municipal Quality Control Manager Mr. George Akplu of the Goaso, also encouraged farmers to adhere to the standard quality practices to ensure that the Country maintains its premium quality on the international market.
Cocoa Horizons is the central flagship pillar of Barry callebaut’s sustainability program designed and implemented in all origin countries including Ghana to promote the company’s vision of sourcing and processing 100% sustainable cocoa globally.
The Cocoa Horizons program is aimed at providing smallholder cocoa farmers with the necessary farm skills and knowledge to promote wider uptake and adoption towards sustainable intensification for better cocoa livelihoods and nurture stewardship.