How The Increased Price Of Chocolate May Help Farmers

The price of chocolate is continuing to rise, but this time, it is for the benefit of farmers who grow the cocoa beans. Chocolate is made from beans harvested from cocoa plants. Those beans are then dried, roasted, and crushed so that they can be processed with cocoa butter and sugar to be turned into the candy bars we all know and love. In addition to being a sweet treat, chocolate also contains small amounts of protein, zinc, iron, fiber, and magnesium, according to WebMD, with darker chocolate containing more benefits than lighter, milk chocolates.

Due to ongoing droughts on West Africa's Ivory Coast, farmers are facing a cocoa bean shortage, and struggling to bring in their typical income — some have even fallen into poverty due to the lack of supply. Consumers could soon be seeing the effects of the drought and subsequent shortage reflected at the grocery store when browsing the candy aisle.

Price hikes could fight poverty

In an effort to combat poverty among farmers, Ghana and the Ivory Coast — the world's largest producers of cocoa — are raising premiums that traders and chocolate makers must pay for beans, according to Reuters. Ghana reportedly has a higher premium, due to production of higher quality beans.

Ghana's origin differential was -50 pounds per tonne in July, and will see an increase to 20 pounds per tonne in August, per Reuters. The publication states that the Ivory Coast's was -125 pounds per tonne in July, and will be set to zero in August. Prices have reportedly dropped below zero in the past due to competition from other cocoa markets worldwide. This change will not affect the main crops for the 2022-23 season, but will likely apply for the 2022-23 mid-crop and the 2023-24 season.

Though your favorite candy bar may see a price hike in the future, this increased premium will ensure that farmers receive a fair wage as compensation for their work.