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Nigeria ‘missing out’ on current scramble for Africa’s cocoa

Nigeria ‘missing out’ on current scramble for Africa’s cocoa
March 10
18:52 2018

The price of cocoa on the global market has increased because of a reduction in production output from Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire, choice markets for European chocolate makers.

Reuters reports that Ghanaian beans are currently trading as high as £200 per tonne while Cote d’Ivoire’s stand at £85.

The supply pressure was worsened after the Coffee and Cocoa Council (CCC) in Cote d’Ivoire said it will suspend programmes for the 2018-2019 season to avoid a supply glut.

“Given the increase in global cocoa supply and falling prices since 2016/17, the CCC has decided to carry out a census of the coffee and cocoa orchards,” the council said in a statement although it did not say when the census will begin.

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“Pending the finalisation of this census, we inform you of our decision to temporarily suspend any distribution of improved plant material, seeds, cuttings, etc, from the 18/19 season.”

A dealer told Reuters that “the shippers locally are running around looking for cocoa to be able to honour their contracts”.

An increase in West African cocoa shipments to the US has also reduced supplies to Europe.

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Traders say cocoa from Nigeria and Cameroon would have served as replacement but output has been slow from both countries.

Nigeria used to be ranked fourth in cocoa production after Indonesia, Ghana and Ivory Coast.

The country is currently ranked seventh in cocoa production.

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