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Pito Intake Surges As Christmas Festivities Gather Momentum In Wa   
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The consumption of locally brewed beer - Pito – has increased astronomically in Wa Municipality, according to brewers, as preparations for Christmas celebration gather momentum in the Upper West Regional capital.

Market observers also attributed the surge to “double seasonal effect,” that is, the evolving harmattan weather that requires more intake of liquids coupled with the rolling euphoria heralding the commemoration of the birth of Jesus Christ.

Pito is a type of beer made from fermented millet or sorghum in northern Ghana. It is made by small producers, and is typically served in a calabash outside the maker's home where wooden benches or stools are provided for those who drink and the drinking is often done sitting under shades of trees.

Madam Habiba Zakaria, a Popular Pito Brewer in Wa, in readiness to serve her early morning customers, told the Ghana News Agency in an interview that by 4:00am customers had started trooping to the base and within 13 to 14 hours, the big belly pots were emptied.

Her daily profit hovered around GHC140.00 to GHc150.00 during non-festive seasons or days but during merrymaking periods like Christmas, her daily sales jump to GHC200.00 or even GHC220.00.
“This is the period we make more profit than any other time,” Madam Habib said, stressing she sells up to 100 medium pots a day, serving at least 50 and 65 customers every day.

The upsurge in Pito consumption, she said, was good for growing her business and equally good for several jobless people, particularly women, as she hired additional labour to shore up production to meet growing demand.

However, she warned that in order for any brewer to maintain the rising consumption trend, the producer ought to ensure preparation of “good and harder” Pito to achieve the target.
Madam Habiba, who started brewing Pito some 25 years ago, had been using the income accruing out of the production to fend her family.

She described Pito production and sale as a “lucrative business” in Ghana’s smallest Region, which attracted both indigenes and foreigners to drink the locally made beer, which was reported to contain glucose and therefore provided substantial energy to the body.

Mr. John Bosco Nagumo, a customer, who had secured his calabash for sipping Pito defended the nutritional values of the drink, rating it above foreign made beers sold in the local market.
“Pito is more energizing and gives protein, whiles bear will increase the fat content in you,” he said after smiling and sipping from the tip of his calabash full of foaming Pito.

That notwithstanding, he added: “The yeast produced from Pito can be used in preparing soup”.
Mr Nagumo urged Ghanaians to develop taste for locally made things to create jobs opportunities for the citizenry.

Pito, a cereal food drink, is one of such food product that is widely locally brewed and consumed mostly by the populace in Northern Ghana.

The food drink is a traditional alcoholic beverage that is prepared from carbohydrate-rich cereal crops such as millet, guinea corn, or maize.

It is brewed in many different styles and different taste. Apart from serving as an inebriating drink, Pito is important in fulfilling social obligations such as marriages, naming and burial ceremonies, parties, and other social gatherings.

In northern Ghana, Pito serves as an energy drink, which the youth consume lots of it all day long for their farming activities.
Source: GNA

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