Students urged to consume more cocoa to improve academic performance

Students and pupils have been urged to consume more cocoa products to improve upon their academic performance in school.

Dr Edward O. Amporful, Chief Pharmacist at the Cocoa Clinic in Accra, who gave the advice, said regular intake of cocoa had the ability to improve their memory and general brain functions and promoted nourishment or health of brain cells.

The Chief Pharmacist also stated that cocoa had the ability to minimise worrisome changes that accompany menopause as well as affords anti-cancer and cancer prevention properties.

He was addressing students drawn from some selected tertiary and secondary schools in the Sunyani Municipality as part of this year’s National Cocoa Day celebration in the Bono Regional capital.

The forum was aimed at encouraging the youth to venture into cocoa farming so as to boost production of the commodity in the country.

The Acting Executive Director, Cocoa Health and Extension Division of COCOBOD, Dr Nii Tackie-Otoo, in a presentation said the major challenge currently facing the cocoa sector was the “ageing farmer syndrome”.

He lamented that if steps were not taken to encourage the youth to venture into the sector, efforts at increasing cocoa production to about one million metric tonnes in the country would be a mirage, explaining that the average cocoa farmer in the country now stood at 55 years.

He, however, assured the youth that COCOBOD was poised and ready to support anybody who was willing to go into cocoa production with all the necessary assistance.

COCOBOD, he said currently has about 40 farmer groups estimated at 70,000 in cocoa cultivation in various parts of the country.

Professor Kwadwo Adinkrah, Vice Chancellor of Sunyani Technical University on his part, appealed to COCOBOD to admit more students for industrial attachment if they are to attract many of the youth into cocoa farming.

FROM DANIEL DZIRASAH, SUNYANI

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