In the reign of Nana Akora Frampong Abedwimhene, Palm wine was discovered. It is important to note that Chiefs in the olden days were mostly hunters. In his such expedition Nana Akora Frampong Abedwimhene, was accompanied by his hunting dog called Boasare to forest of oil palm trees where elephants abound.
The elephants used to draw up the tops of such palm trees and sucked the juice from the stumps. One of such trees fell down and the dog licked the juice for its sweetness Later on Nana also tasted some and became intoxicated. When he returned home his abnormal behavior alarmed his people and he was considered getting “mad”.
After few hours he also gained his normalcy. One day by accident, a fire which dropped from his smoke pipe on the felled palm tree burnt the palm tree which produced the juice. The smoke colored it. He dressed the color from the source of production with his knife and the juice flowed profusely which he enjoyed very much resulting in his increased “madness” waned in the evening.
The people of Abedwim therefore fell more of the oil palm trees and dressed them in like manner which continuously produced more juice for their enjoyment especially when “Fired” and redressed. The said meaning “ensa da” which gave the name to the juice as “ensa”(Never Finish) this is the discovery of wine “Nsafufuo”. Consequently anybody who drank the palm wine began to sing a song and that gave the name Abedwim Two remarkable episodes in Nana Frampong’s reign were:.
One discovery of palmwine Nana Akora Frampong invited his brother-in-law then Akrokerrihene Nana Anti Kyei to such drink party. Accompanied by one page (Ahenkwaa), he Akrokerrihene, honored the invitation. He drank more of the palm wine for its sweetness and taste and was thus fully intoxicated.
Inspite of the advice by the Abedwimhene to stay a while, the Akrokerrihene left. On his way home he attended nature’s call and instead of using the usual stick to clean himself, he mistakenly and in such abnormal mood used his Sharp knife (Atope), which cut so deeply into his buttock causing such a fatal wound from which he died almost immediately.
The page (Ahenkwaa) ran to inform the people of Akrokerri of the incidence who in their frenzy assumed that their chief was assassinated by the Abedwim people. Without any warning Akrokerri people attacked Abedwim with full arms and forced them to run away before they could consolidate their position to fight back in vain until they were conquered.
In the Asante kingdom, five chief(Safiesofoɔ) are responsible for providing nsafufuo (palm wine) from the forest and making it available for a variety of usages at Manhyia palace. They provide palm wine on Akwasidae morning to Bampanase Nkonwafieso ritual, and in the late afternoon, it is their duty to provide fresh palm wine for Asantehene’s Sadwa.
Today palm wine is consumed in homes and at social events. It is also used for industrial purposes following the extraction of its contents such as yeast for baking, and alcohol for the production of portable ethanol. Palm wine also contains the antioxidant, Vitamin C. And Vitamin C, on the other hand, helps in maintaining good eye health.
There is nothing that is as beneficial to our health than the various gifts of nature. Unarguably, palm wine is one of them. If you are a palm wine lover, drink responsibly.