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Asili Coffee outdoored | Ghana News Agency (GNA)

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By Yaw
Ansah, GNA
    

Accra, June 25, GNA – Asili Coffee, a
carefully selected and roasted to the highest specialty standard coffee, has
been introduced onto the Ghanaian market.

Licensed by COCOBOD, the new coffee brand is
ethically sourced from the best African farms with most outstanding beans.

Former President John Agyekum Kufuor, who
outdoored the product at the weekend, commended the Asili company’s leaders for
being innovative by adding value to a commodity that was lesser known.

He said coffee had been an old crop but had
not contributed immensely to the economy because not much attention had been
focused on it.

“We have over the years concentrated on cocoa
neglecting coffee. It is time to focus on growing, up-scaling and adding value
to benefit from the growing demand. We can do it and it is good we have started
now,” he noted.

Mr Collins Ntim, Deputy Minister of Local
Government, said the government was focusing on agriculture and
industrialisation as the anchor of the country’s economy by creating economic
and social opportunities for the private sector.

He noted that government was poised to
transform the rural landscape of the country in a sustainable manner by
creating a more diversified, better-integrated and modern rural economy to
improve living standards and prosperity.

“Government’s immediate priority is to build
on the resilience of the rural communities, harnessing what works successfully
for them and also turn the focus on the youth, most of whom are not gainfully
employed,” he stated.

The Deputy Minister said together with other
institutions, government had rolled out a national tree crop programme, dubbed
Planting for Export and Rural Development (PERD), to complement the Planting
for Food and Jobs (PFJ) initiative.

The programme would develop eight commodity
value chains namely Cashew, Coffee, Cotton Coconut, Citrus, Oil Palm, Mangoes
and Shea, through a decentralised system.

The move according to him would create jobs
for the youth, mitigate the effects of climate change, increase household
income in the rural areas and establish a sustainable raw material base to spur
up the decentralized industrialisation drive through the ‘One District One
Factory’ initiative.

Mr Ntim recounted that, as at end of the month
of May, some four million coffee seedlings had been raised and distributed to
farmers.

He urged the private sector to take advantage
of the enabling environment, created by government and the ambitious
agricultural programmes to diversify and grow businesses.

Mr Dareen Change, Director of Quality Control,
Asili Coffee, explained that the variety of the product had been specially made
with floral fragrance.

He noted that the company with its
headquarters in Akropong Akuapem, in the Eastern Region, had cultivated many
acres for coffee in the area.

The waste of the coffee, he said, was being
used to grow oyster mushrooms, as part of efforts to build a thriving business
in the Municipality, as well as ensuring environmental sustainability.

Mr Dennis Aboagye, Municipal Chief Executive
of Akropong, who underscored the essence of industrialisation, remarked that it
helped the progress of agriculture, trade, transport and all other economic
activities.

“Industries help make the best possible use of
our human and physical resource in the interest of economy. Rapid
industrialization is important for generating employment opportunities,
utilization of all types of resources, promotion of education, training and
research, improving the productivity of labour and balanced regional
development.

“This is the key to economic development. All
advanced countries of the world are industrialized. The rationale for promoting
rural industries is to generate employment at the local level, use local
resources and labour intensive technology, produce goods to satisfy local
demand and increase incomes at the village level,” he hinted

GNA

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