Blog

Building a Future for Chocolate

Geoff Riley

30th January 2014

Here is a short video on the challenges and opportunities facing cocoa producers across the world but especially in sub Saharan Africa which accounts for 70% of global production. Supply is struggling to keep pace with rising world demand and there have been some structural declines in production in several countries.The FT's Emiko Terazono reports from Ghana on how chocolate manufacturers and traders are striving to boost cocoa supplies, which are coming under pressure from climate change and urbanisation amid growing demand for confectionery in emerging markets. Farmers are being encouraged to develop supplementary incomes and invest in sustainable production methods.

  • There are 720,000 cocoa farmers in Ghana
  • Ghana and neighbouring Ivory Coast – together produce almost 60 per cent of the world's cocoa supplies
  • Poor returns from cocoa farming has made farmers vulnerable to illegal miners offering cash payments to secure their land
  • Chocolate sales are expected to reach a record $117bn worldwide in 2014, according to Euromonitor - a rise of over 6% on the 2013 level
  • Bad weather and ageing trees and low capital investment have hampered cocoa farm yields and led to a global supply-demand imbalance
  • In theory, higher prices incentivise cocoa farmers to meet growing demand for chocolate in emerging markets
  • But rising costs of fertiliser and other operating costs have hit the funds available for expansion

FT Video

Ghana's export map

Geoff Riley

Geoff Riley FRSA has been teaching Economics for over thirty years. He has over twenty years experience as Head of Economics at leading schools. He writes extensively and is a contributor and presenter on CPD conferences in the UK and overseas.

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