Côte d’Ivoire not yet concerned about dry spell

Côte d’Ivoire, the current world leader in Cocoa production, has recently reported particularly dry weather conditions but is not yet too concerned about the impact on its production. According to Reuters, Cocoa farmers in the West African country have said that despite the dry weather last week, the current soil moisture would be sufficient to ensure the main harvest for the next two months.

This did not affect the expected harvest for the main crop, which runs from October to March, as the residual moisture in the soil gave the crop the boost it needed. Local farmers expect most of the crop to be harvested in December. However, they are aware that more rainfall is needed from January onwards to prevent the beans from becoming acidic.

We do not have a problem with dry weather that could endanger production. Soubre saw 8.9mm of rainfall last week, 6.5mm down from the five year average.

Theodore Asse, a farmer near the western region of Soubre

Nigeria struck with Black Pod disease

In neighbouring Nigeria, an excess of rainfall has led to the spread of black pod disease in the country’s main Cocoa-growing areas.

The fungal disease thrives in wet conditions and can be devastating to Cocoa plants. It has already affected the production of Nigeria’s main crop. Forecasts are expecting that the country’s 2021-2022 Cocoa figures will decline by 15%.

Speaking to BusinessDay, the national president of the Cocoa Association of Nigeria, Mufutau Abolarinwa, said the season is currently delayed by two weeks. According to him, the price of the commodity has risen as buyers scramble for quality Cocoa beans amidst shortages, as floods sweep farmlands in Taraba and Cross River states.

Lots of cocoa was affected by the black pod disease owing to the excessive rains in major producing states and the flood incidents. The impact is quite huge and we see output for the season declining by at least 15%

Mufutau Abolarinwa, National President, Cocoa Association of Nigeria (source: BusinessDay)

Nigeria is the fourth largest Cocoa grower in the world, producing 250,000 metric tonnes (MT) of Cocoa according to the ICCO’s third quarterly report. If this figure is reduced by 15%, it equates to a loss of about 37,500 MT.

Photo by Roman Synkevych 🇺🇦 on Unsplash

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