The coffee and cocoa sectors are plagued by issues such as declining productivity due to the impact of climate change, deforestation, child labour and low incomes for smallholder farmers. Living incomes for cocoa and coffee farmers are crucial for truly resilient farming communities. This requires guaranteed minimum prices, good agricultural practices, income diversification strategies and a strong enabling environment.
To build truly resilient farming communities, we must look beyond cocoa and coffee as crops towards the farming systems in which they are grown. Rikolto believes that this food systems approach holds the key for farmers to build up resilient livelihoods and enhance their food and nutrition security, as well as for building economically profitable, socially responsible and environmentally sound coffee and cocoa sectors.
“We are working towards sustainable cocoa and coffee sectors in which farmers, young and old, men and women, earn a living income and have access to nutritious and affordable food for current and future generations.”
Rikolto invests about €4.9 million in sustainable and resilient cocoa and coffee sectors in Africa, South-East Asia and Latin America each year. We directly reach over 47,000 cocoa and coffee farmers, of which 27% are women and 22% are younger than 35. These farmers are members of 33 cooperatives. Through partnerships with a wide variety of stakeholders in the cocoa sector, we reach thousands more cocoa and coffee farmers worldwide.
We have boots on the ground in cocoa and coffee producing and consuming countries alike. We reach our impact by focusing on three interlinked aspects: sustainable production, market inclusion and an enabling environment.
Sustainable production refers to climate-smart cocoa and coffee production, productivity improvements, income diversification and the professionalisation of farmer organisations.
"Dynamic agroforestry in organic cocoa production is sustainable because it facilitates compliance with organic certification standards to improve the production conditions of cocoa. That is because of the diversity of species included and the management practices implemented, such as soil conservation and crop covering.“ Luis Regalado, Director | Chocolats Halba Foundation in Honduras
Market inclusion relates both to win-win relationships between farmer cooperatives and buyers, quality of cocoa and coffee , access to finance and markets, and the participation of women and youth in different aspects of the cocoa and coffee sector.
“Sustainably grown coffee and cocoa provides competitive business opportunities for farmers and adds value for consumers. “ Léopold Mumbere, Cocoa and coffee programme director in the DRC | Rikolto
An enabling environment is key for more competitive and resilient cocoa and coffee sectors.
“Our role is to share, collect situations and information and present them for discussion. Then stakeholders come to mutual agreements, make decisions and commit to concrete actions. For example, Rikolto and the Executive Secretariat of the Central American Agricultural Council (SECAC) coordinated the development of the regional Central American cocoa strategy together with all stakeholders who are part of SICACAO.” Ninoska Hurtado, Regional Cocoa Project Coordinator | Rikolto
“Constructive dialogues are incredibly important for every actor in the cocoa and coffee supply chains. They help build transparency and understanding and to share knowledge. Do you want to work together with us? Reach out and join our growing network of changemakers.”
We are a proud co-founder and active facilitator of national and regional multi-stakeholder platforms in producing and consuming countries, such as
Rikolto also actively contributes to regional and international multistakeholder platforms, such as the World Cocoa Foundation (WCF), the Living Income Community of Practice, the Global Coffee Platform, the Sustainable Coffee Platform of Indonesia (SCOPI), the Specialty Coffee Associations Indonesia (SCAI) and the International Women’s Coffee Alliance (IWCA), the VOICE network, the Global Coffee Platform, the International Coffee Organization and the World Coffee Producers Forum.
Our partners include: