As cocoa exports soar, coffee’s plunge

Thursday, 22 October 2020 11:37
As cocoa exports soar, coffee’s plunge

(Togo First) - Last Tuesday, the 2020-2021 cocoa and coffee marketing campaign was launched in Kpalimé (120 km from Lomé) in the presence of the ministers of agriculture and trade. 

The two sectors were hard hit by the Covid-19 crisis, coffee especially. Indeed, Togolese coffee exports fell by 42%, from 4,500 t in 2018-2019 to 2,600 t in 2019-2020. 

“This health crisis hit the coffee economy hard,” deplored Enselme Gouthon, secretary-general of the committee in charge of coordinating the coffee and cocoa sectors (CCFCC). He however emphasized that the 2019-2020 campaign began late. 

Poor performances in the coffee sector were also due to a collapsed international demand. The latter crashed as activities of major processors were slowed and global trade flows were disrupted by the pandemic.  

Conservation and local processing

To turn the tables, the Togolese government plans to better preserve surpluses (keep unsold stock and sell it in the next campaign), boost local processing (as recommended by the revisited national development plan), and local consumption. This is a major challenge, especially considering that 98% of the coffee produced in Togo is to be exported. 

Cocoa fares better

In contrast with coffee, cocoa exports soared by more than 40% - from 7,200 t in 2018-2019 to 10,200 t in 2019-2020. 

Coffee and cocoa, let’s recall, are respectively Togo’s second and third export crops, behind cotton. They employ more than 40,000 households. 

Ayi Renaud Dossavi

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