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Decision and Policy Analysis Research Area – DAPA

Building climate resilient cocoa value chains in Ghana

Picture1One of the challenges facing Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA) is scale. There are many pilots of CSA practices that are effective locally but lack mechanisms allowing ready replication in other contexts. These pilots therefore remain limited in scope, unable to reach the millions of smallholders that need to adopt CSA practices to remain viable in the face of a changing climate. This impacts not only smallholder livelihoods but also the viability of global supply chains that provide consumers with chocolate and coffee.

To confront this challenge, CCAFS is supporting a project that leverages existing smallholder value chain interventions to translate climate science into actionable strategies for farmers and supporting actors, including agricultural businesses, voluntary certification schemes, and investors, across a number of geographies using smallholder coffee and cocoa systems in Africa and Latin America as model cases. This novel combination adds value to existing work with the goal of achieving adoption at scale for locally relevant CSA practices.

We will assess the climate change exposure of coffee and cocoa systems at a sub-national scale, develop appropriate CSA practices with farmers incorporating cash crops and food crops to increase the resilience of these systems, and codify these practices in adaptation guidelines. These guidelines will be mainstreamed through existing certification training curricula and used to develop innovative impact investment products. Results will be promoted with multiple voluntary certification agencies and impact investors to achieve scale. Outcomes will influence government, private sector and civil society actors towards a common adaptation agenda applicable to other smallholder crops. The project brings together preeminent actors in agricultural climate science (the International Center for Tropical Agriculture, CIAT, and the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture, IITA), voluntary certification (Rainforest Alliance), impact investing (Root Capital) and sustainable agriculture systems (the Sustainable Food Lab) to achieve the expected outcomes.

On May 13 the project team will be convening the first in a series of multi-stakeholder platform meetings with key actors from the cocoa sector in Ghana to start work. The goal of this workshop is to present the project, map existing stakeholder activities, assess how the project can add value to on-going work in Ghana through partnerships with actors such as COCOBOD, CRIG, trading houses, producer organizations. The outcome of this first workshop are the seeds for a sweet collaboration that will help Ghanaian cocoa farmers increase their resilience to climate change and keep their consumers happy with sweet chocolate for years to come.

Watch this space for further updates on the results of the event.

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