The GSFP relies on many partners for implementation of the school feeding and auxiliary activities.
National Cocoa Drinks Project
Government, in an effort to add value to cocoa beans and reduce the quantity of raw beans exported to the world market, has resolved to ensure that at least 50% of Ghana’s annual cocoa output is processed. Further to the processing, a conscious effort is to be made to consume cocoa locally. A number of strategies have been mapped out to promote cocoa consumption among some segmented groups of potential consumers. The strategic segmented group among these are pupils in basic schools.
The Ghana School Feeding Programme has been identified as one means of ensuring that all pupils in basic schools across the country are exposed to cocoa consumption at their tender ages. Since pupils in basic schools are mostly at their formative years, adding cocoa products to their menu will help them develop lasting taste for cocoa. The health and nutritional benefits of cocoa are enormous, therefore introducing the pupils to cocoa consumption will not only serve as a major boost for the national cocoa consumption campaign but also as a means of ensuring quality health for the pupils and enhancing their cognitive development.
Concept Of the Cocoa Drink Project
The concept of the project is to provide a cup of cocoa drink to all Kindergarten, Primary and Junior High School pupils in Ghana on every other school-going day i.e. 3-times per week preferably Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
This project is an initiative of Government through the Ghana Cocoa Board and the National Committee for the Promotion of Cocoa Consumption (NCPCC). The day-to-day implementation of the project is the responsibility of the Ghana School Feeding Programme under the auspices of Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection. Ghana cocoa board will chair an oversight committee otherwise known as Steering Committee to be charged with the overall implementation of the project.
Towards implementing this project, government proposed that the Ministry of Finance through Ghana Cocoa Board, Ghana School Feeding Programme under the auspices of the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection in collaboration with Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, Ministry of Education and Ghana Education Service and Metropolitan Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) will work together to facilitate the inclusion of cocoa in the School Feeding Programme and also ensure the sustained provision of cocoa beverages and chocolates to schoolchildren from Kindergarten, Primary to Junior High School. The pilot programme was to take off officially in October, 2018 across the country.
Objectives of Cocoa Drinks Project
The overall objective of this intervention is to inculcate the habit of cocoa consumption in basic school pupils in Ghana. To help meet this broad objective, the following sub-objectives have been proposed:
- Promote school enrolment, attendance and retention
- Promote pupils’ academic performance at school
- Reduce hunger and malnutrition
- To increase cocoa consumption among Ghanaians thereby increasing the per capita cocoa consumption
- To contribute to increase cocoa production.
In the first year of implementation, cocoa powder in sachets will be packaged either in cups or in sachets. Mineral water will be served alongside with the packaged cocoa powder. The ready-to-drink (Tetra pack) option will be considered during the second year of implementation to allow capacity to be built locally for such production. The ready mixed chocolate beverage in Tetra pack is preferred to a sachet. The choice is influenced by the fact that it is easy to handle, more hygienic and less susceptible to contamination among other factors