By Emmanuel Oluwadola
The Oluwarotimi Akeredolu-led administration in Ondo state has revived the Chocolate Factory in Alade Idanre with other innovations ongoing.
The Senior Special Assistant to the state governor on agriculture, Pastor Akin Olotu said the chocolate company is a plus to Ondo State as a cocoa-producing state.
Olotu said the immediate past administration who kickstarted the project did well but could not complete it while the current administration has continued the good initiative.
“We are here today to see one of the achievements of Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu’s administration. The chocolate factory started as a Cocoa project several years ago under some administrations. The hallmark and philosophy of the current government is that you do not abandon whatever is good.
“Mr. Governor said we have to bring this project back to life after we went back to a United States-based consultant. Because we had no structure nor organisation to roll out chocolate from this place. Nine organisations came together to evaluate what we have and we got Johnvents as the most suitable.
“Before, all that we had here was just this factory building, some other structures were in terrible form but today, Chocolate production commences again as the factory receives new structures. We are producing locally using the indigenous people and in return adding value. We believe that the value chain of cocoa is superior to petroleum,” he said.
The SSA, noted that after completing the innovation, employment will be opened to the citizens, and importation of chocolate will reduce as cocoa processing will be massive in the state.
The former acting Secretary of Cocoa Revolution, Mr Toba Adenowuro who was among the team who started the project noted that drastic change has occurred compared to the previous situation.
Adenowuro affirmed that through the innovations, value will be added to the host community and the entire country.