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Ghanaians on Facebook unhappy with Japanese company branding chocolate ‘Ghana’

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Some Ghanaians on Facebook, the social networking site are unhappy with the branding of chocolate produced by a Japanese confectionery company, Lotte Group Ltd.

The company has a brand of chocolate called ‘Ghana’. The cocoa used in producing the chocolate is imported from Ghana.

Lotte has offices in nine countries of the world including the USA.

On his status Maximus Ametorgoh, posted a picture of the chocolate and wrote “Why must we let another country brand their product using our country’s name? Are they paying us for it? Is it not shameful for our leaders to careless and not even know about it? Even if they bought the cocoa from us, must they use our name?”

And Makafui Ameyibor responded “say some for me, it’s because of lack of confidence I think.”

Checks by ghanabusinessnews.com however, show that this is not new. Indeed, when John Kufuor was president of Ghana and he undertook an official visit to Japan in 2003, he visited Lotte where the chocolate is produced and he saw it.

As a matter of fact Ghanaian officials are aware of this factory and its product called ‘Ghana’.

But the question is, “is it right for a company in another country, even if it has a subsidiary in one country to brand its products by that or some country’s name?”

If you have an opinion, please write to us at info@ghanabusinessnews.com or post your comments to this story.

By Emmanuel K. Dogbevi

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  1. i think people should thoroughly examine their thoughts very well before they lay their ignorance bare in the full glare of the public. I don’t see anything wrong with the company branding one of its product ”GHANA”.For me,it really makes a marketing sense for our good country.It depicts Ghana as not only a cocoa growing country but a producer of quality cocoa.Only God knows how much good such brandings does to the name of our beloved country Ghana.Moreover the name Ghana originally came from an empire not much related to present day Ghana. Thanks

  2. Good for Ghana’s name and marketing of Ghana. However if we want some compensation for the name use, that will be right under international trade. Then lets seek that compensation. Please lets have more people and companies market Ghana, as long as it is positive. very good for Ghana. Way to go Japanese Lotte Group Ltd.

  3. Hmm..Lotte…is a Korean Company….
    that markets also in Japan and many other countries..
    it is a huge group in Korea, like Samsung….
    And using the name Ghana is actually great, cause it advertises our country.

  4. Well, Lotte was established in Japan in 1948 and the headquarters is in that country. Its affiliate in Korea was established in 1967.

    See these websites: Japan: http://www.lotte.co.jp/english/index.html

    Korea: http://www.lotte.co.kr/english/s1_aboutlotte/3_history.html

  5. When we talk about branding a country, it is about the perception people have about the country as against the reality on the ground. The experience have within the country is what defines the country in experiential terms. To brand a country means developing attributes of advantage for the country through strategic steps to give outsiders a memorable positive experience by your culture, interaction, product or proactive initiatives.

    When comes to the chocolate, the fact that cocoa is bought from Ghana does not give them the licence to use the collective property of over 22 million to make money their concert and involvement; not even to their benefits. Lotte Confectionery did not sign any agreement with the government to produce a chocolate using our name. Even Cocoa Processing Company, which produces gold award wining brand, Golden Tree chocolate, does not even use our country’s name. You cannot buy raw material from USA and name it USA.

    The Ghana chocolate has less than 40% of pure cocoa in it and does not taste like natural chocolate. You have to try it and see what I mean. Even though it is very popular in Japan, it does not translate into more tourists from Japan, more jobs for Ghanaians and income to Ghana. Since we do not have any involvement directly when there comes an issue regarding product inferiority and bad packaging it dents our image as a country. No one, for that matter no country, has the right to use another country’s name to label a product.

    For me and many more Ghanaian, believe that we more than a slim package of plastic taste of chocolate. Lotte Confectionery, must be stopped from using the name Ghana for marketing their product.

  6. I happen to like that chocolate and always eat it when I’m in Japan. And I see no problem in using the name of the country were the cocoa comes from.