There are a number of significant issues and challenges facing members but there is also an appetite amongst farmers to improve quality and increase yield. A good starting point to see these opportunities realized is the commitment from supply chain partners, such as, retailers, processors, large industry actors who see the need for an inclusive supply chain where all actors are profitable, as it would strengthen and make the sector more responsible and transparent.
Over the years volatility in cocoa prices paid to farmers for their produce has caused a lot of uncertainty in the life of farmers and also affects the industry at large. Majority of our members who are the smallholders, don’t make profit for the crop and some see their income even more squeezed by some partners in the supply chain. Market volatility is also a serious problem for them as farm gate prices are being influence by the drop of global price.
The smallholder cocoa farmers produce the majority of cocoa beans, but are not able to benefit from their hard work because they are not organized. They mostly live and work in the hinterlands, remote and rural parts of cocoa growing regions, which makes it difficult to reach them. Farmers recognize the opportunities for the wider industry as demand for cocoa beans keep rising, therefore farmers are keen to capitalized on this to look for better options to sell their crop.