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International Cocoa Council to Consider New Agenda for Change at September Meeting

The next meeting of the International Cocoa Organization is to consider wide-ranging proposals for change.

Michel Arrion, the International Cocoa Organization’s (ICCO’s) Executive Director, will use the 100th Regular Session of the International Cocoa Council and subsidiary bodies in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, 10-13 September 2019 to bring forward revised proposals for a new programme of work at the organisation.

He will also table proposals for a wide-ranging and much-needed update of the ICCO’s communications, including a new website and better use of social media.

The meeting in Abidjan in the second week of September will see Mr Arrion re-submit updated versions of proposals he first outlined in April 2019.

Speaking exclusively to C&CI in July 2019, Mr Arrion said his initial proposals had been well-received at the April meeting. He plans to update those proposals and introduce new elements such as the use of KPIs to track how well the international cocoa body meets newly-defined objectives.

One of the key parts of his proposal for a new five-year plan at the organisation is a drive to promote consumption. Others include providing cocoa famers with access to payments for environmental services such as through carbon sequestration.

Mr Arrion said he would also like to beef up the number of projects in which the ICCO is involved and is gauging support from organisations such as the World Bank, African Bank Development Bank and European Union to support such projects and facilitate fundraising.

As previously highlighted by C&CI Mr Arrion also wants to significantly enhance the ICCO’s statistics and to make use of a wider range of sources to do so.

Mr Arrion also revealed that a host country and venue has been selected to hold the 2020 World Cocoa Conference. The event will take place in Bali, Indonesia in September 2020 at the Bali Nusa Dua Convention Centre.

Progress has also been made on selection of a host country and venue for the 2nd International Cocoa Organization International Symposium on Cocoa Research (ISCR).

The first ISCR was held in Lima, Peru in November 2017 and took as its theme ‘Promoting Advances in Research to Enhance the Profitability.’

The event addressed a number of recent advances in technology and innovation, and enabled experts to share information and agree on common strategies with the goal of accelerating the development of the world cocoa sector.

The second ISCR is expected to be a five-day event and like the first is intended to provide cocoa stakeholders and scientists with a platform to exchange the latest scientific findings and to agree on priorities for collective action.

The ICCO has determined that it will take place either in Montpellier, France, or in Amsterdam, The Netherlands in the second half of 2020.

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