The World Cocoa Foundation (WCF) has announced the launch of a new program designed to strengthen collaboration between the private and public sector to address the threat posed by climate change to cocoa sustainability and the many people who live off the sector. The alliance, led by the WCF, integrates ACDI / VOCA, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and the leading chocolate and cocoa companies worldwide.
This unprecedented initiative aims to increase cocoa productivity among small producers in countries such as the Ivory Coast, Ghana, and Liberia, as well as the Dominican Republic. With the expertise of USAID and ACDI / VOCA, the private sector partners will establish a joint strategy to develop innovations that help farmers adapt to changing weather patterns, such as research and development of resistant plant material, the best cultivation practices, and new agroforestry models. The program will also focus on the problem of deforestation in regions where cocoa is grown and will include collaboration with technical specialists.
For the WCF “addressing this problem now will help to prepare for the future and build the foundation for a solid platform for the private sector. Investing in cocoa which is adaptable to climate is a key step to ensure greater sustainability in the cocoa sector and places our industry in a good position to respond to the threats of climate change discussed at COP21 in Paris last year”, said the interim president Tim McCoy.