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February 01, 2012

Political unrest and drought endanger Ivory Coast cocoa output

Political unrest in the Ivory Coast, where 40 per cent of the world’s cocoa beans are grown, has ‘significantly’ depleted the number of certified fair trade cocoa farmers. Many have fled the West ­African country, while fair trade training programmes have also come to a halt because of the danger farmers face in rural areas.

The situation is already affecting chocolate manufacturers, who are facing the highest cocoa prices for over 30 years. Prices jumped by 10 per cent this month alone. Analysts are predicting they could soon hit $3,720 per metric tonne - a level last seen in January 1979.

more...Daily Mail

Meanwhile, Reuters reports that lower than normal rain and hot weather in late January may also cocoa Ivorian reduce yields

Farmers, who need abundant rainfall and spells of sunny weather to grow cocoa, the main ingredient for making chocolate, said the long dry spell had killed many young trees.
African Agriculture

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