Cargill Cocoa & Chocolate

Partnering with co-operatives brings mutual benefits (15/9/2009)

Partnering with co-operatives brings mutual benefits

Every year, the world produces approximately 3.5 million metric tons of cocoa. Over 70% originates from West Africa, where it is a typical small holder crop; in the Côte d'Ivoire alone, there are over 800,000 farmers producing an average of 1,500kg cocoa beans per year.

By Ivorian law, exporters are not permitted to buy cocoa directly from the farmer. In addition, due to the large number of farmers and the modest volume produced by each small holder, a direct approach would also be unfeasible. Being as close to the farmer as possible, which for us means working with co-operatives deep in the heartland of many cocoa growing countries, is a core part of our strategy as it brings significant advantages to both Cargill and the farmer:


  • gain access to high quality cocoa beans
  • receive first-hand information on crop development, yield, diseases etc.
  • invest in long term production potential
  • demonstrate our commitment and give support to the farming communities


  • gain access to a shorter and more efficient supply chain, resulting in improved compensation
  • receive better access to price- and market information
  • produce better quality beans for which they earn a better price
  • can achieve a better standard of living

Having seen evidence that it is effective, we firmly believe that this partnering should become the standard for the way companies do business in the future.

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