Olam Cocoa Ghana held a forum for its network of purchasing clerks to ensure the best procurement practices by reviewing existing structures and establish new protocols.
Olam Cocoa Ghana established as a Licenced Buying Company (LBC) since 1999. Traceability and sustainability form an important part of their operations and the company confirmed to Bartalks that they follow the ISO 34101 standard in this regard.
The forum was attended by 450 ‘Royal Purchasing Clerks’ from various cocoa producing districts.
‘Royal Purchasing Clerks’ are the company’s grade ‘A’ category for clerks who typically procure a minimum of 5,000 bags of cocoa beans per season, which is quite a tough levle to reach, considering the highly competitive nature of the industry.
The Procurement Head & General Manager of Olam Cocoa, Jonathan Quaynor, told the attendees that by providing financial capital to procurement clerks and receiving support through the Olam Farmer Loan scheme, the company can ensure that farmers were paid on time and in full.
The interests of farmers need to be protected by having the right systems and processes in place. For example, we’re distributing new electronic scales for weighing cocoa to promote greater transparency in the transaction process.
We are also developing a succession plan to help future generations start a career in cocoa, including through offering training in good agricultural practices.
Olam Cocoa also announced that it is commissioning eight executive bodies made up of Royal Purchasing Clerks.
They will have direct oversight of all purchasing activities in their various districts and it will be their responsibility to ensure that the necessary standards are maintained.
This will be achieved through regular engagement with the leadership of Olam Cocoa Ghana to update on progress and swiftly resolve any issues.
Eric Asare Botwe, Business Head of Olam Cocoa Ghana, said,
The company has been the best performing LBC in the country for the past three years. This is in large part due to the hard work and dedication of our purchasing clerks. We’re grateful for their continued commitment and hope that the additional measures we’re announcing will support them into the future.
Olam Cocoa Ghana and Royal Purchasing Clerks intend to have an annual forum to ensure that all stakeholders are familiar with best practices.