After a successful harvest in 2017-2018 and a significant increase in volumes, we had to detect pesticides in our warehouse during the organic inspection in Europe.
In my previous blogpost, I explained that the cocoa harvest of 2017-2018 was good and that prices dropped significantly at the beginning of the season.
gebana Togo always paid prices above the minimum FLO price (25% above conventional) plus an organic premium. Additionally, we have certified many new farmers in the north of the country (Badou region).
After some years in which we had difficulties to compete in the field in order to get the volumes we wanted, that year was the complete opposite: We were able to increase volumes significantly.
As a result of our high prices for cocoa, we detected pesticides in our warehouse during the organic inspection and in the analysis of some containers after their arrival in Europe!
This is a pity considering the amount of work being done in the field and in terms of sales (see previous blog post).
We can explain this situation due to:
in one of the world's poorest countries, it was simply too tempting to buy conventional cocoa at a lower price and sell it as an organic and fair trade product. We are currently investigating thoroughly to pinpoint the source of fraud.
All containers were sampled and pesticide-analyzed on arrival in Europe. Only the "clean" are sold as organic – the others are downgraded to conventional.
This situation will definitely have significant financial implications for gebana Togo.
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Smallholders and local producers harvest and refine products of extraordinary quality worldwide. But for many of these producers there is no adequate or stable market. You can buy directly from these producers via the Access to Market Platform and help them to participate in the market. The principle behind this is crowd ordering – a new trade model whereby a number of consumers order a product together so as to achieve a minimum order quantity. We at gebana support the producers with our know-how, and organise the logistics.
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