The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) has announced that the government will soon roll out a programme that will see every school-going child enjoy free cocoa drinks every day.
According to the executive secretary at the office of the COCOBOD CEO, the move is to develop the taste of Cocoa among the Ghanaian children.
He said this will boost the local consumption of cocoa products.
His comments follow the passage of the $600-million loan agreement for the Cocoa Productivity Enhancement Project.
In an interview on Accra-based Starr FM, he said “We believe that to expand the market, we need to create a new market, especially in the sub-region to increase demand. As a country, mostly when we go for programs, we go on tea breaks meanwhile we do not produce tea in this country. We could consider going on a cocoa break instead.
“If we introduce our kids to cocoa, they will grow up appreciating it and it will become part of them. As part of the School Feeding Program, we can introduce cocoa drinks and so that something we are going to do.”
It would be recalled that in 2017, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo made a promise to residents of Kumasi that the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government will soon start a programme to offer every school-going child a free bar of chocolate daily.
The president was speaking at the 2017 celebration of World Cocoa Day when he made the promise.
Nana Addo believes that this programme would boost the consumption of cocoa products locally.
The provision of the free chocolate to all pupils would be reportedly run alongside the school feeding programme.
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“It is for this reason that the Ministry of Agriculture through COCOBOD, the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection through the school feeding programme, and the Ministry of Education through the Ghana Education Service, are to ensure the sustained provision of cocoa beverages and chocolates to school children from primary school to secondary level,” he said.
After almost three years of that promise, the government is yet to fulfill his pledge to give school children free chocolate and