Sunday, 17 January 2021

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Chocolate: Fairtrade tastes sweeter

Chocolate One

7.07.2016 – Chocolate is one of the world's most desired flavours and possibly the most loved taste across seven continents. The future of the cocoa production, however, is at risk. On World Chocolate Day we celebrate an industry integral to our civilisations and culture.

Steady growth over the last hundred years has transformed the chocolate confectionary market into an $80bn a year global industry. But now, with demand forecast to outstrip supply, a crisis is looming for the industry.

Cocoa prices are volatile and influenced by many factors – from extreme weather, pests and disease to speculation and political instability in producing countries. Even as cocoa prices rise, farmers have not been capturing their fair share meaning that many cocoa farmers are abandoning the industry. Low prices paid to farmers result in low productivity and poverty in farming communities.

Chocolate Two

Many chocolate companies are waking up to the situation, and to the fact that Fairtrade can be part of a solution, helping to ensure decent incomes for farmers and a long-term supply of quality product to companies. Fairtrade sales are generating significant amounts of Fairtrade Premium funds for cocoa farmer organisations to invest in their farms, businesses, and communities. 

This money is increasingly being used to support producer organisations and farmers in strengthening their business – for example by investing in replacing old cocoa trees to increase productivity, or investments in better facilities for crop collection, storage, transport, or processing. 

By introducing and strengthening cocoa livelihoods, and helping farmers capture more of the profits of the cocoa value chain, Fairtrade makes it possible for farmers to grow high quality cacao today, and for their children to grow it for generations to come.

Fairtrade forms an integral part to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, introduced in September 2015, aiming to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all.

Chocolate Three

Did you know?

  • Cocoa is considered a tropical plant. It grows on trees and in a hot, rainy climate. Hence, it can only be cultivated in close proximity to the equator

  • Fruit pods from cocoa trees contain 30-40 seeds, which are extracted, fermented and dried in the sun turning them into cocoa beans.

  • The Netherlands is the global leader in cocoa trade and has committed using sustainable cocoa for all domestic cocoa and chocolate products by 2025.

  • Cote d’Ivoire (1.5 million tonnes), Ghana (842,000 tonnes) and Indonesia (447,000 tonnes) produce the largest shares of the annual global production of 4 million tonnes.

  • Around the world, 90 percent of cocoa is grown and harvested on small-scale family farms.


UNRIC’s related links
Sustainable Development Goals
Fairtrade Cocoa

Three: UNRIC

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