(Business in Cameroon) - French company Pallisco will support cocoa producers working on the outskirts of its forestry concessions, in Mindourou (Eastern Cameroon) to help them produce sustainable cocoa and sell them at fair prices.
The project will be implemented through a public-private partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MINADER)) and funded by the French Development Agency to the tune of XAF200 million.
In that regard, a funding agreement was signed on March 25, 2021, in Yaoundé. According to Christophe Guilhou, French ambassador to Cameroon, through the said agreement, the MINADER, France, and Pallisco intend to boost cocoa production while complying with Cameroon’s sustainable development goals and avoid causing deforestation.
MINADER Gabriel Mbairobe revealed that through the partnership, his ministry will provide farm advisory services, through the ACEFA program.
This public-private partnership is in line with the policy framework for sustainable and zero-deforestation cocoa elaborated by Cameroon on January 13, 2021. Through the framework, Cameroon, private operators, international partners, and the civil society committed to "working together, both technically and financially, for the sustainable production and marketing of cocoa, the preservation and rehabilitation of forests, and the inclusion of cocoa-producing communities in Cameroon."
The policy framework is being set up in a context marked by disagreements between local communities and forest operators or commodities (oil palm, gold, diamond) producers. An example of such disagreements is the clashes between Socapalm, Herakles Farms, and local communities of the Litoral and the South West regions. This is a problem that the project wishes to address by redefining the terms governing collaboration between forest operators and chocolate makers, we learn.
BRM & JRD