Public invited to two-day workshop on koko production
The public is invited to a two-day workshop on cacao (koko) production, presented by the ASCC Community and Natural Resources (CNR) Division, and the AS Department of Agriculture. The event is funded by the USDA Western SARE (Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education) program.
Local horticulturist Ian Gurr told Samoa News yesterday that the workshops will be carried out by Dr. Daniel O’Doherty, president of Cacao Services Inc. in Honolulu, Hawaii.
He said the goal of the project is to help the agriculture extension agents in the local Department of Agriculture, ASCC-CNR, farmers and other interested locals learn more about koko production.
“Recently, there has been an increased interest in koko production in American Samoa,” Gurr said, adding that there are possibilities for locals to be able to produce koko-based goodies and treats in the territory, which could mean a booming chocolate industry here.
He referred to the chips that visitors to Samoa usually take back home and said American Samoans can do the same thing but instead of chips, we can have a profitable chocolate industry that exports not only sweets but also any other products that use koko as an ingredient.
Gurr said that in addition to shipping the chocolates off island, locally manufactured koko products can also be showcased and sold during First Friday at the Fagatogo Marketplace and during cruise ship season.
The two workshops are scheduled to take place next Wednesday, Oct. 23 and Thursday, Oct. 24 from 9 a.m. to 12noon on both days at the DOA conference room in Tafuna.
More information on the event can be obtained by contacting Ian Gurr at 699-1394 ext.240.
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