According to Reuters, Côte d’Ivoire’s Cocoa-growing regions saw heavy rains last week, which farmers say will encourage the early growth of their main crop from October to March.
The global leaders in Cocoa production are currently in their mid-crop season, which runs from April to September. Farmers are reportedly optimistic about a strong finish, expecting to harvest a large volume of pods from mid-August to late September.
They said that regular rainfall throughout the month of July will be necessary to stimulate more flowering and bring a strong start to the new season. The size of the upcoming main crop, which has already started to flower, will be largely dependent on the weather over the coming months.
In the southern region of Agboville, 103.2mm of rainfall was reported last week, 39.7mm higher than the five-year average. “It rained a lot here this week. Flowers are beginning to appear on the trees,” said Olivier Boka, a local farmer from the region.
Similarly, the eastern region of Abengourou saw above-average rainfall of 82.7mm last week, 26.1mm more than usual. The central regions of Bongouanou and Yamoussoukro also experienced higher levels of rain in the past week.
Not all areas were so fortunate, however, with the western region of Soubre, the centre-western region of Daloa and the southern region of Divo, all receiving below-average levels of rain last week. Soubre was 32.4mm below the average, with only 24.7mm of rain. “Flowering has started, but we need more rain in July for the main crop harvest to be abundant,” explained Salame Kone, a farmer near Soubre.
photo source: jbdodane | Flickr