We've been told and taught that, Tetteh Quarshie, a Ghanaian blacksmith, brought cocoa beans to Ghana from the Fernando Po Islands. It is believed that he smuggled the beans to Ghana by swallowing them.
Well, another story told by Wonder Hagan says differently published by GhanaWeb. According to Hagan, the uneducated blacksmith shipped six pods of Cocoa back to Ghana from Fernando Po by hiding them in his toolbox.
As a missionary journeying in Fernando Po, he was supposed to be checked at the checkpoint like every other person. Knowing that no one would check his toolbox, he hid the six pods there. That plan worked perfectly for him. He stayed on the ship for six weeks before returning to Ghana then Gold Coast to plant the pods.
He first attempted planting them in Accra but it didn't work due to the type of soil so on his normal missionary journey, he found the soil of Mampong very fertile. The chief of Mampong gave him some acres of land where he planted the first seed. That's why Cocoa cultivation started from there.
An interview with Thomas Awuku, the man who has been working on the land told the true story saying"That's the history they told us but when I got to this stage, I realized they were telling us a lot of lies about Tetteh Quarshie. Tetteh Quarshie didn't swallow the cocoa beans because in the 1870s travelling was difficult. There was no aeroplanes for travelling, so we travel by sea, either by ship or canoe. Tetteh Quarshie went with ship and it took him 6weeks from Fernando Po now Equitorial Guinea to Ghana then Gold Coast. Assuming he swallowed the cocoa beans for six weeks, are they trying to tell us that, for the whole six weeks he couldn't visit the washroom?. And if he did, it means everything went back into the sea and he never brought them to Ghana"
Tetteh Quarshie's exploit has earned Ghana some respect on the international commodity market and the government of Ghana too has champion the consumption of Ghana's cocoa by changing 14th February every year meant to be Valentine's Day to National Chocolate Day where people usually give chocolates as presents.
I hope you have a change of mind on how cocoa came to Ghana?
Thanks for reading.
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