Since we've sold nearly half a million Gyapa cookstoves that families cook on every day, we thought it was high time for a post on food from Ghana. These West African staples might make you hungry, which is why we've included a link a Red Red recipe, one of our favorite dishes. Enjoy!

10. Jollof Rice
Rice cooked in a tomato sauce with hot peppers and vegetables.

9. Waakye
Rice and beans cooked together.

7. Fried chicken with rice

8. Kebabs
Pieces of meat (can be goat, beef, pork, chicken, or guinea fowl) on a stick with onion, covered in pepper marinate and grilled. 

3. Pepe
A spicy mixture of chilli peppers and tomatoes, serves as sauce for rice or other foods.
Picture
Isaac, Gyapa driver, makes pepe
6. Groundnut soup
A soup made from peanuts and eaten with banku or rice.

5. Coconut water
Served straight out of the coconut!

4. Kelewele
A spicy marinated fried plantain deep. Rated one  of Lonely Planet's top street foods in the world!

2. Red Red
Beans cooked in a tomato oil sauce, and typically served with fried plantain and meat (fish or chicken).Link to Red Red recipe from West African food blogger, Betumi: http://betumiblog.blogspot.com/2011/07/recipe-85-ghanas-famous-red-red.html

1. Banku and Grilled Tilapia
Fermented corn/cassava dough mixed proportionally and cooked in hot water into a smooth, whitish consistent paste
Picture
Gyapa customer, Tina, prepares banku
 
 
Have you ever wondered why Gyapa cookstoves are so efficient?

Gyapa ceramic liners are the key to Gyapa's fuel-efficinecy. When families cook on Gyapa, they place the charcoal in the ceramic liner, light it, and cook on the heat. Thanks to the ceramic liner, the heat is retained in close proximity to the cooking vessel, instead of being lost in the metal like other traditional stoves. This is how Gyapa cookstoves save families up to 50% charcoal.

Kwame, one of our Gyapa cookstove ceramic liner partners, makes 2,000 ceramic liners a month. He introduces us to his team of 8 and shows us his production line in Ghana in the video below.
 
 
Marketing & Sales Officer, Micah Prempeh, sells Gyapa cookstoves throughout Accra. He typically visits 15 retailers during the day, delivering Gyapa, picking up stoves under warranty which need repairs, collecting payments, and asking for feedback and comments. Micah also finds new Gyapa retailers, expanding our reach to additional markets and customers.

Micah's typical day, documented in photos, shows the relationship that he and all our Marketing & Sales Officers have built will clientele and the sustainable impact Gyapa cookstoves are having on the local economy. 

Click on the photos below to learn more about Micah's activities.
 
 
Picture
Peter showing his freshly painted Gyapa fuel-efficient cookstoves
Peter Amako Atta began producing Gyapa cookstoves nine years ago and has grown into one of the largest stove manufacturers in Ghana. Based in the Achimota neighborhood of Accra, Peter used to sell shoes on the side of the road. Selling shoes offered no steady employment as Peter relied upon unpredictable consignment availability and product. Often, when shipments were delayed, Peter had no work. Peter was a part of the informal business sector in Ghana and without a set sales outlet. 

In 2003, Peter received training from EnterpriseWorks to become a metal artisan manufacturing partner. Peter was attracted to the opportunity to become a manufacturer because of the importance he thought Gyapa cookstoves could be to Ghanaians. "Gyapa is very economical and saves a lot of charcoal for families," Peter said. He sensed that the Gyapa cookstove would be a very popular product in Ghana and wanted to be involved with the product as a sustainable and long lasting way to earn a living. 

Peter began his business manufacturing the stoves himself, producing fewer than 100 stoves per month. Focused on growing his business each year, Peter has transitioned from a single manufacturer to managing his own business. Peter’s manufacturing site, peacefully hidden in the middle of a small banana plantation behind a city landfill, has grown to be one of the largest Gyapa producers in Accra. He now manages ten employees and produces over 1,200 stoves per month. Peter has grown his business each year and reinvested his profits to expand his operations. Stoves produced out of this site continue to be of the best quality and are sought after by retailers and consumers. Peter and his team manufactured nearly 10% of all Gyapa cookstoves in Ghana in 2012.  “It is a very good product that people will buy and we can sell this nationwide. It saves charcoal and saves people money. I am planning to expand my business to access even more customers." Through his business success, Peter has also been able to purchase a plot of land where he plans to build his future home.

Peter has benefited from working capital loans from Gyapa Enterprises which he has used to expand his production capacity. We have provided almost $60,000 in loans and grants to cookstove production partners in our value chain just like Peter. Through the sale of carbon credits, we're able to provide strategic sustainable investments throughout the value chain, working to support individual business and to expand market linkages and networks to increase access of Gyapa stoves to new communities and households. 
 
 
Meet Isaac Nyanya, Gyapa Enterprises' Driver & Sales Agent. Isaac has worked with Gyapa Enterprises for over a year. He works with Marketing Officers, Gyapa cookstove producers, retailers and customers, distributing and selling ceramic liners, metal cookstove bodies and finished cookstoves throughout the Accra area. In addition to moving and selling cookstoves, he also assists with community demonstrations, helping Marketing Officers highlight the differences between Gyapa fuel-efficient cookstoves and traditional methods of cooking in Ghana.
When asked about his favorite part of the job, Isaac said, "I love working with people at the grassroots level. I get to interact with cookstove manufacturers, retailers and customers. I'm always interacting with people, which I'm delighting in."