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Good news for local cocoa farmers

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International price of Cocoa has increased in recent weeks promising local cocoa farmers better revenue in the next few months.

This was confirmed by Cocoa Working Group – an affiliate working group established under Solomon Islands Chamber of Commission and Industry during a radio talk back program last week.

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Mr. Patteson Siliota from Commodity Export Management Authority [CEMA] who is a member of Cocoa Working Group said global price for cocoa has increased due to fall of cocoa production in African countries.

“World Cocoa Price as of 3rd April 2024, closed at US$10,545 per ton. As of 1st April 2024, ICCO recorded – US$9,669/MT, equivalent to SBD81,048 /MT. and £7,699/MT, equivalent to SBD80,449/MT.

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“The main reason for the cocoa price surges is the Global Cocoa Supply Shortfall.

“This is due to World leading cocoa producing countries in the West Africa region such as Ivory Coast, Ghana and Nigeria have experienced shortfalls in cocoa supplies during the 2023/24 season (October to September),” he said.

Mr. Siliota said cocoa is a commodity that has been long forgotten by many but continues to be an important commodity in Solomon Islands.

He said encourages landowners to invest in cocoa farming as numbers of cocoa producers have decreased over the years.

Mr. Siliota said there are 20 registered export licenses recorded and are currently active in the country.

“A total estimate of 3,867.086 MT of cocoa national production was recorded last year.

“Cocoa production by provinces shows that Guadalcanal (1935.435 MT) is in lead followed by Makira (981.172 MT) then Malaita (821.071 MT)

“Cocoa production in Percentage: Guadalcanal (50%) in lead, followed by Makira (25%), Malatia (21%), all accounted for 96% of total country production and the rest of the province’s accounts for the remaining 4%.

“For 2023, total cocoa exported was 4220.676 metric tons valued at $87,915,027.

“10-year annual average for cocoa exports is about $73,410,298.

“At present the price of cocoa is increasing and this is good for the farmers, provided that fair prices are paid to the farmers,” he said.

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Mr. Siliota strongly encourage cocoa farmers to maintain your cocoa plantations to give good yield.

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