Close to 70% of producers in Côte d’Ivoire depend on cocoa production, according to the Royal Tropical Institute of the Netherlands (KIT). However, the producers do not make a living income, the net annual income required for a household to afford a decent standard of living. To achieve that, it does not suffice to simply pay the living income reference price for cocoa. Farmers need support to diversify their incomes and adopt and good agricultural practices.
Rikolto joined forces with Colruyt Group, Entreprise Cooperative de Saint Paul (ECSP), Puratos, Access Agriculture, Agro Insight, Ghent University and Fairtrade Belgium for this project that runs from 2020 to 2023. With the funding of IDH – under the Beyond Chocolate initiative – we jointly develop an integrated approach towards a living income. We consider six parameters, including productivity and quality improvements, income diversification, access to finance, agroforestry and a decent price for cocoa, and test which ones are crucial to achieve a viable living income model for farmers.
One year after the start of the project, we take a look at the first results.