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Equitable distribution agenda must be now; Ghana, Cote d’lvoire platforms urges EU

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by: Nana Yaw Reuben

The Ghana Civil-Society Cocoa Platform (GCCP) and the Ivorian Platform for Sustainable Cocoa (PICD) says the time has come for action to reflect the will expressed by the European Union in the Brussels Declaration.

This 5th edition of the World Cocoa Conference focused on discussing equitable distribution of value along the cocoa supply chain, which will help ensure a better living income for farmersin Africa.

For the last few weeks, cocoa prices have been rapidly increasing due to worse-than-expected harvests from Western African countries such as Ghana and Ivory Coast, squeezing cocoa supplies worldwide.

The jump in prices is due to poor harvests, as a result of extreme weather in important cocoa-producing countries in West Africa.

The prices jumped to alltime highs, touching over $10,000 (€9,234.3) per ton, before settling back at $9,622 per ton aroundlast week, following disappointing harvests in key cocoa-producing countries such as Ghana, Ivory Coast and Cameroon.

Ageing cocoa trees also contributed to lower harvests, as they are more susceptible to disease. This also means that they are more expensive to maintain, with several farmers choosing to abandon old cocoa trees and farms, for greener pastures.

The jump in prices do not seem to be translating into gains for cocoa farmers, who are still struggling considerably with increased production costs and reduced crop yields.

In a joint statement issued today by the two largest cocoa growing giants indicated that they will remain vigilant on the ground to report on the real progress of interventions agreed upon when the time comes for accountability.

According to the statement, the two platforms took an active part in the 5th edition of World Cocoa Conference held inBrussels, Belgium from 21 to 24 April 2024.

The cocoa giants used the opportunity congratulate the International Cocoa Organisation (ICCO) on the successful organisation of this global event.

The Platforms also welcomed the ICCO’s commitment to the fundamental issue of the purchase price of cocoa which reflected in almost all conversations but was unhappy with the poor representation of Ghanaian producer organisations and NGOs on the discussion panels.

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