Today we made a trip to Nsawam in the Eastern Region to meet Madam Ophilia Animah Archer, the CEO of Ophelisco Enterprise, and to have a look at the GOLD COAST NONI production site. We had a short journey from Aburi through a valley with a beautiful natural environment with coconut palms and pineapple farms. It wasn’t difficult to find her location in Nsawam. After a short walk we ended up under an old mango tree. Madam Ophilia and her employees welcomed us very warmly. When we entered inside, we were even surprised how the whole place looked very clean and neat. In a small, airy office we sat down to start with our interview.
Madam Ophilia, we know your dinks for some time already and we enjoy them a lot. How come you got the inspiration for your Gold Coast Noni Products?
My husband was an herbal doctor. He was using the Noni for treatment. First, we were using the Gold Coast Noni Supplement. And I was going to Accra, walking from shop to shop, selling the product. But the price was very heavy for some people.
Once I met one woman, she was my friend. And she said:
“Ophilia, why don’t you mix something with the Noni so that the price will come down for everybody to take it.”
So I decided to use pineapple with noni to make drinks, so that the price will come down. When I came home, I told my husband: “Let’s try.”
And you can see this area, the Eastern Region, Akuapem North, there is a lot of pineapple. We made some samples in the house, for our own to taste and it was very good. So we started with the Noni Pine Drink. And I was the one selling it in Accra.
My husband was doing his job with the supplements and at the same time I was doing the drinks. But his patients didn’t have money to pay for the supplement. So we came to agreement and he took everything to FDA for testing. This is how it started.
Now we had the Noni Pine Drink, the Noni Supplements, the Molasses, the Noni Tea and Noni Capsules. Some people can not drink the liquid, then they use the capsules.
Is this pure noni in your supplement?
It is noni with brekese. In the tea is also brekese inside.
The Noni Tea is very good, especially for men because of prostate cancer.
But it is not only good for prostrate. He used the noni to treat a lot of diseases.
What is your personal background?
Well, I was a business woman, I did business in Technical School.
I did selling, at the same time I was a baker. I baked bread and pastries.
When I did that, I just carry it and I sell it myself. So when we started this, it was easy for me to go to the market and sell it.
When was the date of founding?
We founded the company 2012.
Where do you get the ingredients from? Do you have a noni farm?
Yes we have a noni farm. But we don’t have pineapple farm. We get the source from the farmers around.
Do you grow the noni organic?
You don’t use any weedicides or pesticides?
No, there are no pests that disturb Noni.
Did you have any challenges in the last years? What did you face?
Well, my challenge was when my husband died, he died three years ago. It was left with me and the children, we had to survive. Before I was the one helping him with the production. I put myself inside everything. So, when my husband died, people started telling me they want Noni Pine with alcohol, that is when I started with a small sample of the Noni Cocktail.
But there is no alcohol inside?
No, no, no. I just called it cocktail like there is, but there is no alcohol inside.
So, when it was time for the funeral, I made this cocktail to give to the people at the funeral. I used the Noni Pine and the Noni Cocktail to sell to the people who attended to the funeral. After that I had calls: “We want the hot one, the Noni Cocktail is good.”
So I started the Cocktail after my husband died. And for the past three years, and I say even the last year the selling of the Noni Pine went down. Everybody wants the hot one. And because of the Covid, too, the hot one is very nice for everybody. So everybody was asking for the Noni Cocktail. This is where I started the Cocktail and I thank God for that. It is moving faster than the Noni Pine.
And you said, before you even did the molasses yourself.
Yes, I did it myself but sometimes it is difficult to get the sugarcane. The molasses is good for people with anaemia and sickle cell anaemia. I have special people to give to them.
When we talk about the business itself. Was the registration difficult?
Yes, I found it difficult because of financial problems. We went to Food and Drugs Board, because of the herbal we also had to go to Standard Board and to Mampong for testing. You have to do all these things before they allow you to sell.
So it was the financial issue but beside that it was going smooth?
Is your market in Accra or do you sell all over the country?
I would say yes and no. Because I cannot say it is whole Ghana. But we have some places like Takoradi, Sunyani, Techiman, Tamale, Accra and Tema. And there are people in the Eastern Region, Volta Region and Togo.
Who are the people you want to attract, who do you target?
Well, as for the drink it is good for everybody because of the Noni. But you can see if the calls are coming: “Congratulations, the drink is good.” It is the adults, the aging people, they are the ones using the Noni Cocktail more. The kids want the sweet one, the Noni Pine.
Is it possible to mix your drinks with alcohol? Have you tried it or are there people who make alcoholic cocktails with it?
If you want to drink it with alcohol, you can mix the Noni Cocktail with bitters or even with beer. You can also add the local rum.
What is your goal for the future of your company?
We want the company to be big and employ more workers. We want to sell worldwide. Because it is very good for everybody. Kids, youth, adults, old age, everybody can take it. If you are sick or you are healthy, you can enjoy it.
Do you have advice for the younger generation who is interested in producing their own products?
From my experience it is not easy to come out with your own products. Sometimes people will limit you, they will discourage you.
Did you have situations, whereby someone bought your drink and said it is not good?
As for that one, it never happened. (laughing)
I don’t know, somebody just call you from far away: “Oh I just got your drink, somebody gave me one bottle, and it is very good! I was suffering from heart problem, but when I took it, within 10-15 minutes I was calm.”
God helped a lot of men, too, when they were weak in bed, the Noni Cocktail helped them to get up again. They call me: “Congratulations, God bless you, what you brought is very good.”
And then the ladies, too, when they have menstrual problems. Sometimes, when it is time for your menses, you feel pains or somebody will come and her period is not flowing, then she can take it. It will flow easily.
You are our partner at the KalaBash Festival. Have you been to any other events before?
We went to National Farmers Day programs. My husband also went to Bolgatanga, Kumasi, and then Koforidua for exhibitions. Sometimes I took my products to Accra for exhibition, or we went to trade fair.
I want to come back to my previous question. Do you have any advice for the youth?
Oh yes! With God all things are possible. So, if you determine to do it, to do your own business and you put yourself in, don’t just start and sit down and watch other people or think your workers would do it for you. No, put yourself inside! And with prayers everything will be fine.
Without God I could not sit here and talk to you. It is not easy. But with determination and God you can do it.
Thank you so much Madam Ophilia for this interview and for your important contribution to the good health of so many people.
You can order the fruity NONI PINE, the hot NONI COCKTAIL DRINK and the herbal supplements here:
For further information check out Gold Coast Noni in the GhanaFam Business Directory !