Jan 27, 2020
TAKORADI, GHANA -- Earlier this month, USA Rice conducted a foodservice seminar for artisanal rice cookers and vendors in Takoradi, the capital of the western region of Ghana, following successful seminars in Accra and Kumasi late last year. In this city of almost a half million people, the seminar brought together more than two hundred and fifty participants drawn from 12 foodservice associations in both the central and western regions of the country.
The seminar provided an in-depth look at the U.S. rice industry, featured a Q&A session with local brand owners, and afforded attendees an opportunity to examine samples from two importers, Crown Commodities and Tradepass Ltd.
“Our objective here is to educate foodservice professionals, who are heavy rice users, about the positive attributes of U.S. rice and our superior product,” said Sarah Moran, USA Rice vice president international. “We are seeing awareness and sales increase among the target audience as a result of these seminars which is impressive since we are competing with rice from other origins that has a price advantage. We make the case for our quality, reputation, and reliability.”
The president of the Western Regional Associations, Madam Rebecca Essandoh, summed up the feeling of the participants, when in brief remarks, she declared that the foodservice people can attest to the quality U.S. origin rice. She mentioned major U.S. brands that had helped in their trade over the years, and said “...as for American rice, it is still fresh in our minds.”
Essandoh continued to appeal to importers to help bring down the cost per bag, so they can continue to patronize their businesses. Her statement received thunderous applause from the packed hall.
A post-event survey of participants confirmed that the seminar had been “an eye-opener,” and that attendees appreciated the opportunity to learn from their peers who had longstanding, positive relationships with U.S.-grown rice.
The event concluded with a dance competition among the various associations. Everyone danced to good music and had a hot lunch of U.S. rice jollof and chicken.