The increase in culinary business is the best way to improve the financial base of the population and therefore expand the national economy, the Director of the EKGS Culinary Institute, Efua Otua Goode Obeng Kyei, has said.
“My humble plea is that we should all support more of our people to venture into the Culinary Tourism market to improve their livelihood.”
“Whether you sit down and dine at a restaurant or enjoy local street food, you are likely to take photos and capture the experience to share with family and friends.
You will never forget the food you tasted and the experience surrounding it,” she said.
Mrs Kyei was speaking at the 45th graduation ceremony of the institute last Sunday during which 130 students graduated.
They comprised 127 females and three males.
They came from Ghana and other African countries.
It was on the theme: "Building the Human Capital for the Culinary Industry: The Way to Economic Transformation: EKGS Culinary Institute, Doing Great Things With Creative Minds.”
Mrs Kyei said she was of the firm conviction that though the economic crisis seemed daunting, it presented the culinary industry with the opportunity of identifying solutions locally, packaging them for a total patronage and resultantly earning operators revenue to face the challenges within the medium to long term.
She said the economic growth in the country over the years had largely been attributed to the incomparable role being played by the culinary industry.
In Ghana, she said the services being offered by the culinary industry (creation of jobs in restaurants and hotels sub-sector) contributed significantly to the country's Gross Domestic Product (GDP)
“Revenue in the culinary market worldwide amounts to some 30.78 billion dollars in 2023 which is expected to grow annually by 9.34 per cent.
In the light of the above, it is not just appropriate but important to encourage more people to train to join the food market.
At this critical moment of growing unemployment in the country, you need a vibrant culinary industry to rewrite the narrative,” she said.
On its own, she said the EKGS Culinary Institute had resolved to invest in the human resource development base of our dear country.
In 2024, she said EKGS would continue with its corporate social responsibilities by applying a 50 per cent discount on tuition fees to 10 less privileged students.
She appealed to the graduands to continue to invest more time and energy and money to improve their future.
A tourism ambassador, Joseph Armah Amartey, who was the guest speaker, said EKGS Culinary Institute was actually shaping the minds of young people to do great things.
The sector you are going into requires decency, safety, smartness and quality assurance.
My professional conduct has introduced me to Assurance of Food Safety and Quality Control,” he said.
He said the culinary industry provided an enormous variety of opportunities, and as graduates, “don't leave here unprepared and go home with the mindset that you cannot find jobs or you cannot meet the quality standards needed to promote good food which will impact on quality health”.
He urged the graduands to let their expertise and experience to guide them to think smart and look sharp.
The Director of the Inspectorate Directorate of the Food and Drugs Authority, Maria Aba Lovelace-Johnson, encouraged the graduands to go out there to take advantage of the numerous job opportunities available in the areas of Risk Communication and International Food Safety Systems.