Cocoa is important to the consuming and producing countries. According to the World Cocoa Foundation, more than
three million tonnes of cocoa beans are consumed worldwide annually. Globally, at least five million smallholder farmers work on cocoa plantations, providing jobs for roughly 40 to 50 million people. The overall chocolate market, which main raw material is cocoa is worth $101 billion.
But all is not well with the industry. A key indicator is the fall in price, which has affected cocoa farmers since last year. Indeed, prices have suffered their sharpest fall in years, piling pressure on hard-pressed farmers. Since last year, prices have plunged on expectations of the bumper crop. For instance, the price dropped to $1,780 per tonne. This year for instance, cocoa has traded at £1,562 per tonne, its lowest level since 2013. New York futures slumped to $1,869 a tonne on March 2, the weakest price in 9-1/2 years. Between July 2016 and March 2017, global cocoa price fell by more than a third. According to experts, the cocoa market has been on a wild ride over the past year.