ICCO cocoa organisation celebrates 50th anniversary in Ivory Coast

The International Cocoa Organisation (ICCO) has marked its 50th anniversary celebrations in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, discussing sustainability within the region’s crop supplies serving the global confectionery sector, writes Neill Barston.

As the organisation noted, its key 108th session took place between 2-6 October, under he chairmanship of Mr. Abel Fernandez of the Dominican Republic, held at the Palm Club Hotel, and marked the first in-person gathering for three years owing to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Notably, ICCO members were reported to have had a productive exchange of views and made important contributions to the analysis of the latest developments in the global cocoa economy. The main topics covered during the week included election of the new President of the International Cocoa Council, Mr. Rafael Soriano, Ambassador of Spain to Ivory Coast.

Other subjects making its agenda included progress  on the organisation of the next global cocoa conference to be held in Brussels, April 21-24, 2024, as well as exploring recent developments of the global cocoa market – which has seen international prices being traded on stock exchanges at 40-year highs. This is turn has led to news breaking last month of farmer pay being raised across the region – in Ghana by 63%), and neighbouring Ivory Coast by 11%.

The next session of the International Cocoa Council will take place in Brussels, Belgium, in April 2024, after the 5th edition of the World Cocoa Conference which will be held from April 21 to 24, 2024, organised by the ICCO, which has continued its work over the past five decades, linked to the UN, with its headquarters in the Ivory Coast, having been formerly been based in London. It has  52 member countries, including 23 cocoa-exporting countries and 29 cocoa-importing countries.

As the group explained, its core goals remain to seek to  promote and support the economic, social and environmental sustainability of the cocoa value chain, and in particular to improve the living conditions of cocoa farmers, acting as a centre of knowledge and innovation. It also seeks to act as a platform for dialogue among its member ountries and between the main actors of the cocoa value chain, as well as providing technical assistance.

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