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Cocoa prices soar as Cote d’Ivoire , Ghana threaten supply cut

Cocoa prices rose sharply on Wednesday after key producers Ivory Coast and Ghana threatened to stop selling their products to buyers unwilling to meet a minimum price.

The threat pushed the September forward contract for the commodity, listed in New York, to $2,540 a tonne, up 1.4 percent on the day.

The two African nations, which together account for 60 percent of the world’s cocoa production, summoned buyers to Accra for a two-day meeting demanding a price of $2,600 per tonne.

At the end of the meeting, Joseph Boahen Aidoo, chief executive of the Ghana Cocoa Board, told a news conference that their demands had been accepted in principle by the participants, but that there would be a follow-up meeting to work out how to implement the agreement.

“Ivory Coast and Ghana have suspended the sale of the 2020/2021 crop until further notice for preparation of the implementation of the floor price,” he said.

Calling the move “historic”, he said that “this is the first time when the producers have called consumers and the first time whereby suppliers have called buyers to come and engage on price,” he said.

“Over the years it has been the buyers who have determined the price for the suppliers.”

Earlier, on the sidelines of the meeting, the chief of Ivory Coast’s coffee and cocoa council, Yves Kone, said the industry needed a price that amounted to “a decent compensation” for workers’ efforts.

The world’s chocolate market is worth around $100 billion, of which only $6 billion go to cocoa producers.

But Casper Burgering, commodities analyst at ABN Amro, told AFP that the current price rise may turn out to be temporary, as supply was more than sufficient to meet world demand.

Another analyst, at Commodafrica in Paris, said however that drought in Ivory Coast could lead to a shortfall in the coming cocoa harvest, putting upward pressure on prices.

Source: Dailymail (UK)

Fair Trade USA raises cocoa price minimums

Fair Trade USA will increase the floor price and fixed premium it requires companies to pay cocoa farmers under its certification system, the organization said on Tuesday.

The increase is designed to improve livelihoods in a sector that has long grappled with farmer poverty, child labor and deforestation

The nonprofit will increase its minimum price for conventional cocoa to $2,400 per tonne from $2,000. For organic cocoa, the price will be $300 over this minimum or the market price, whichever is higher at the time. The premium, which is used to fund community projects, will increase to $240 per tonne from $200.

The new pricing structure will take effect on Oct. 1, 2019.

The 20% increase in prices puts Fair Trade USA in line with the minimums set by Europe-based Fairtrade International in December, with these newly announced minimums impacting U.S.-based brands and manufacturers.

In 2018, over 22,000 tonnes of cocoa beans were sold by Fair Trade certified cocoa farmers, according to the press release. Nearly 4.8 million tonnes of cocoa were produced worldwide in 2018/19, data from the International Cocoa Organization shows.

Representatives from Ivory Coast and Ghana, the world’s top cocoa producers, are meeting in the Ghanaian capital of Accra on Tuesday and Wednesday to discuss farmer incomes. The two countries are working to better harmonize their pricing systems.

For the 2018/19 main crop, Ivory Coast set its guaranteed farmgate price at 750 CFA per kilogram (about $1.29 per kg, or $1,290 per tonne) while Ghana set its guaranteed price at 7.6 cedis (about $1.41 per kg, or $1,410 per tonne).

On Tuesday, New York futures prices settled at $2,539, an 11-month high for the contract, but prices have fallen to as low as $1,901 this year.

Source: NEW YORK (Reuters)

COCOBOD PARTICIPATES IN THE 108TH SESSION OF INTERNATIONAL LABOUR CONFERENCE IN GENEVA

The International Labour Conference is the ILO’s highest decision-making body. It meets annually, bringing together the tripartite (governments, employers and workers) delegations from the Organization’s 187 members States and several observers from other international actors to consider series of topics placed on its agenda by Governing Body of the ILO.

This year’s meeting will be held in Geneva, Switzerland between 10-21 June 2019. The Conference is composed of a plenary and several committees set up to consider the standing items on the Conference agenda, and technical committees to deal with technical items This year’s Conference takes place during the Centenary of the ILO and will deliberate on the following;

  • The crafting and adoption of international labour standards in the form of conventions and recommendations.
  • Supervising the application of conventions and recommendations at the national level.
  • Representing a forum where social and labour questions of importance to the entire world are discussed. Delegates explore the course of social progress in the world, but the central theme is the report presented each year by the ILO’s Director-General.
  • Violence and harassment in the world of work and Thematic debates and events connected to the Future of Work, including various Centenary Initiatives.

It’s being held in two locations in Geneva, Switzerland: the Palais des Nations and ILO Headquarter, for more than 5,700 worker, employer and government delegates from the ILO’s 187-member States.

The COCOBOD delegation is led by Mr. Francis Akwasi Opoku (Director, Human Resource/Solicitor Secretary) with Messrs Sefa-Clottey (Director, Legal), Francis Gyamfi Ocran (HR Manager, COCOBOD), George Oppong (HR Manager, QCC), Nana Akua Achiaa Mansah (Dep. HR Manager, CHED), Regina Adjei Baffour (Administrator, Takoradi), Festus Nene Caesar (Dep. HR Manager, CMC), Felicia Gawu-Mensah (Dep. Admin. Manager, CMC) as team members.

COCOBOD Workers, on the other hand, are also represented by Messrs Edward Okoh Ampofo (Supreme Chair), Theodore Otomfo Adu (Chairman, Snr. Staff Assoc.), Nasiru Issaka (Union Chair, SPD), Emmanuel Samuel Awuku (Union Exec., CRIG).

To mark the ILO’s Centenary year, the meeting’s Plenary will hold several high-level sessions throughout the conference, to accommodate the visits of a large number of heads of State and Government.

The President, Nana Addo Dankwah Akufo-Addo will address the Plenary together with other Heads of States.

The Conference will elect its President and Vice-Presidents, to be followed by the opening address of ILO Director-General, Guy Ryder, the spokespersons of the Employers’ and Workers’ groups, and the Chairperson of the ILO Governing Body.

Ghana Cocoa Board Explore Business Expansion Strategies with SA Bank

The SA Bank delegation met with Joseph Boahen Aidoo, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), in the capital city of Accra.

For its part, the bank has committed 80 of its executives to dig into where and how Africa can grow its businesses and business communities. During their meeting, Aidoo emphasized the essential economic contributions of the country’s cocoa output to the global supply. Ghana is second only to Cote d’Ivoire, with an average of 900k metric tons worth $2bn.

Together, the two African nations supply 60% of the world’s cocoa. According to a COCOBOD release, Aidoo also bemoaned that despite an estimated $100bn market value for cocoa, the top-two producing nations only accrue $6bn in annual revenue.

Aidoo told the delegates that falling cocoa prices have impacted farmers. According to the International Cocoa Organization (ICCO), the daily price has sunk 26% from its 2016 peak from $3,182 per ton in January 2016 to $2,342 per ton at the start of 2019.

As of June, that number had dipped further, to just under $2300 per ton. The low revenue had forced some farmers to sell their farmlands to illegal gold miners, which poses a threat to the survival of Ghana’s cocoa industry and the world cocoa economy at large.

Climate change has also adversely affected the sector sustainability, he said, noting that Ghana has taken various steps to curb its effects on cocoa production. COCOBOD launched what it calls Productivity Enhancement Programmes (PEPs) to assist farm rehabilitation, mass pruning and hand pollination.

Standard Bank leader Steve Hall said his financial institution will continue to support COCOBOD in its annual loan facility to purchase cocoa. The 17 visiting executives also visited the Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana, the Cocoa Processing Company and the Cocoa Marketing Company to have the first-hand experience of the work COCOBOD does every day.

Source: www.confectionerynews.com