Reports last week suggest cocoa production in the Ivory Coast, the world’s largest producer of cocoa, may be one million metric tonnes this year, down from 1.36 million last season.
Speaking to reporters in the Ivory Coast's capital Abidjan, Gilbert N’Guessan Anoh, president of the National Management Committee for Coffee and Cocoa which manages the cocoa sector, said: “At the start of the harvesting season in October, I told you that there would be a decline, and the decline is a fact,” reports news agency Reuters.
Signs late last year that the harvest from the world's biggest cocoa producer would be lower than in 2007/8 have led to consistent upward pressure for the price of cocoa on international futures markets.
In London last week, benchmark futures for delivery in July this year traded at £1,720 (€1,909) per tonne. Although bullish, this figure compares to the margin-squeezing highs of £2,000 (€2,133) a tonne clocked up in January this year, and when prices crashed through the $3,000 (€2,263) a metric ton in June 2008.