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How much do cocoa and coffee contribute to livelihoods in Africa?

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Cocoa and coffee are tree commodities essential to West and East African economies. In West Africa, smallholder farmers produced an estimated 73% of total cocoa production as of 2015, with the average farm size being around one to four hectares (Wessel and Quist-Wessel 2015). These farmers rely heavily on cocoa production, and it constitutes a significant proportion of their household income (Bymolt et al 2018). Since the 1930s, West African farmers have been world leaders in cocoa production led by Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, and Cameroon, competing with Southeast Asia and small volumes from the Latin American countries of origin. Cocoa is relevant to the economies of several countries (Figure 14.1). In Cote d’ Ivoire, although the cocoa contribution to the national GDP has been fluctuating over the years, it peaked at 10% in 2003 and was about 7% as of 2013. For Ghana and Cameroon, cocoa contributes approximately 2-4% to the respective countries’ GDP. Similarly, cocoa exports constituted about 40% of Cote d’ Ivoire’s total export value as of 2016, the highest over the last three decades. Cocoa’s contribution to Ghana’s exports has however, been on a decline over the years, from 52% in 1987 to about 10% in 2016.
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    Wainaina, P.; Minang, P.A.




    cocoa, coffee, agroforestry, livelihoods, economic development


    Côte d'Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroon

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