A report carried out for Fairtrade Africa by the World Agroforestry Centre and Bioversity International concludes that monetary benefits derived from Fairtrade cocoa remain low, contributing on average an additional 2 per cent of cocoa income for certified farmers.
At the same time, co-operatives use part of the Fairtrade Premium to provide their members with farming inputs and training, and to fund overall community development.
The report said multi-sector collaboration is needed to address persistent challenges and to support Ghana’s overall move to a sustainable cocoa sector.
With an annual production of about 750,000–1 million tonnes, Ghana is the second largest producer of cocoa in the world. In recent years, Ghana has also emerged as the world’s principal supplier of Fairtrade-certified cocoa, with about 6 per cent of national production falling under that scheme.
The report found that only part of the Fairtrade Premium of US$200 per ton is channelled through co-operatives to the producers as a cash bonus (16-65 per cent of the premium), while the remainder is given as farming inputs like fertilizers, agrochemicals and planting materials (up to 38 per cent), or allocated to fund trainings, cooperative administration, and certification fees (20–84 per cent) and overall community development (up to 15 per cent).
Another important finding of the report was that although Fairtrade farmers have improved access to training compared to non-members, the average productivity on Fairtrade-certified farms remained within the range of the national average for productivity, and additional efforts are needed to increase productivity.”
For more information see the forthcoming September 2017 issue of Coffee & Cocoa International.