Moutia holds a Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Business Administration from Ashesi University and a Cambridge International Diploma in Travel and Tourism from University Of Cambridge. She is the owner/manager of Mint Club. Mint Club was established in 2015 and since then has held quarterly exhibitions to promote local businesses and entrepreneurs. The majority of these businesses are related to the cocoa industry, such as Decokraft, Maison Kwame, Ohene Cocoa, and Shea & Cocoa. Through Mint Club, Moutia collaborates with professionals in the field to provide several popular educational programs, such as Discover Chocolate and Natural Living by Shea & Cocoa aimed at educating people about cocoa, its benefits and contributions to the Ghanaian economy.
Based on her business background, entrepreneurial skills, as well as the management experience she gained during the last 15 years working as Executive Director for Meridian Group, Moutia is developing an Incubator/Accelerator program. The program’s mission is to select young startups in the cocoa industry with strong transformational potential and engage their founders in order to help them enhance their resources and optimize their development in the cocoa industry. Moutia has worked with several NGOs in Ghana and she holds an NGO Project & Operations Management certificate from Cambridge Center of Excellence. She is also a Certified Practitioner of the Art and Science of Neuro-Linguistic Programming. Moutia’s inner drive is to go further and to make a difference where it matters most.
Dr. Kristy Leissle
Dr. Leissle is an internationally recognized expert on the politics, economics, and cultures of cocoa and chocolate, and author of the recent book on industry politics, Cocoa. Since 2004, her research and publications have shed light on West African cocoa political economy and trade; the US craft chocolate market; how gender constructs shape cocoa-chocolate value chains; and the complex meanings produced and consumed through chocolate marketing and advertising, among other topics. Dr. Leissle is creator and author of the “I am a cocoa farmer” series for ConfectioneryNews.com, which profiles individual cocoa farmers in Africa. She is a frequent speaker at industry events, and has presented at every major chocolate conference, including Chocoa, Fine Chocolate Industry Association, NW Chocolate Festival, and Chocolate Conservatory.
Dr. Leissle taught the first university class in the US dedicated to chocolate (Chocolate: A Global Inquiry) at the University of Washington Bothell, from 2010-2015. From 2010-2013, Dr. Leissle served as Education Director for the NW Chocolate Festival, building the largest public education program on chocolate in the US. Among other previous roles, she served as Dean of Beans for Theo Chocolate, where she created an educational series on chocolate economics, politics, science, and manufacture; and as Administrative Director and Instructor for the Cacao Grader Workshop in Seattle in 2012, on developing a quality assessment system for cocoa. From 2017-2019, she was Cocoa Marketing and Research Associate for the development-through-trade organization Twin & Twin Trading. In addition to her work with CIG, and her research and writing, Dr. Leissle serves as Cultural Specialist for National Geographic-Lindblad Expeditions. Dr. Leissle is currently researching for her next book, on cocoa value addition across sub-Saharan Africa. She holds degrees from Oxford University, Boston College, and the University of Washington.