Mr Michael Okyere Baafi, the Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, has lauded the beverage industry for its intervention to curb the spread of the COVID-19 during its peak period.
Before they were consulted, he said through a statement read on his behalf, industry players produced sanitizers and other COVID-19 personal protective equipment to reduce spread of the virus among the public, which was highly commendable.
He gave the commendation at the 6th Edition of the Ghana Beverage Awards (GBA) organised by the Global Media Alliance in Accra, on the theme: “Inspiring Excellence in Ghana’s Beverage Industry”.
Mr Baafi underscored the consistent demonstration of a sense of responsibility of the industry through giving back to society and caring for the environment and the residents of the communities in which they operated through varied forms of corporate social responsibility activities.
He entreated industry players to collaborate with stakeholders to work to bounce back completely from the effects of the pandemic.
Mr Mark Okraku Mantey, the Deputy Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, who said beverages had become a part of the public’s lifestyle and a necessity for body rejuvenation, nourishment and a servant of many occasions, said government could not overlook the important role they played in the Ghanaian economy, by creating jobs, and generating revenues through payment of taxes.
He said they also supported the arts and culture industries by sponsoring events and encouraged them to do more to help uplift other industries that depended on supports like theirs.
Mr Mantey said the Ministry projected to generate US$2.3 billion through the beverage industry for 2022 and implored their cooperation to achieve that for national growth.
Ms Emma Wenani, the Director, Global Media Alliance (GMA), underscored the need to recognise the beverage industry for their impact on society and best practices.
She expressed satisfaction with the interest companies expressed to partake in the award categories and how much the public vibrantly voted for the “Product of the Year” category.
After the awarding ceremony, she said the GMA would follow up to ensure that companies were continually working under strict hygienic conditions, were certified, and satisfying consumer needs.
Ms Wenani said more categories were introduced in this edition based on feedback from stakeholders over previous editions, hence the reason for adding international beverages categories in the edition.
Under the 18-category Awarding ceremony, “Coca Cola” was adjudged the “Product of the Year”, “Ceres” as “Fruit Drink of the Year”, “Guinness” as the “Beer of the Year”, “Coca Cola” as the “Carbonated Soft Drink of the Year”, “Kpoo Keke” as the “Liquer of the Year”, “Jameson Irish Whisky” as the “International Spirit of the Year” and “Hollandia Yoghurt” as the “Dairy Product of the Year”.
Others were “Alomo Bitters” as “Bitters of the Year”, “Seagram’s Imperial Blue Whisky” as “International Liquer of the Year”, “Darling Lemon” as “Spirit of the Year”, “Django Ginger Ale” as “RTD of the Year”, “Vitamilk Choco” as “Cocoa/Chocolate Product of the Year”, “Heineken” as the “International Beer of the Year”, and “Rush Energy Drink” as “Energy Drink of the Year”.
The rest were “Sahara Solace” as the “New Beverage of the Year”, “Verna” as “Water of the Year”, “Coca Cola Company Limited” as “CSR Company of the Year”, and “Twellium Industry Limited” as “Manufacturing Company of the Year”.
GBA is supported by the Food and Beverage Association of Ghana, Consumer Protection Agency, Food Research Institute under Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, Perception Management International, Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ministry of Tourism, Arts & Culture, and the Ghana Tourism Authority.