Our Work

Our goal is to improve cocoa productivity and farmers’ resilience within a sustainable landscape

Project Objectives
  • Increase farm-level cocoa productivity to 1000 kg/ha (from the current average of 450 kg/ha)
  • Strengthen farmers’ capacity and skills to run their farms like businesses
  • Increase farmer resiliency with a focus on income diversification
  • Provide farmers with the skills and tools to foster climate change adaptation, mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions, and increase carbon sequestration in cocoa-forest landscapes
  • Improve economic development through landscape governance and land use planning
Key Outcomes
  • Improved livelihoods through yield increase and additional income sources
  • Reduced GHG emissions driven by unsustainable agricultural practices
  • Enhanced carbon stocks through integration of desirable shade trees in cocoa farming systems
  • Demonstrated importance of community land-use planning in Cocoa Smart Agriculture
  • Promoted biodiversity and ecological integrity through awareness creation for environmental stewardship in target communities
  • Development of a financially sustainable incentive mechanism for cocoa-forest landscape governance
  • Development of a functioning natural resources governance system

The services offered to deliver against project objectives include:

1. Increased farm-level cocoa productivity to 1000 kg/ha

(i) Training, professionalization and coaching
  • Farmer groups and associations are strengthened to provide services to farmers
  • Service providers, lead farmers, internal inspectors, pruning gangs, weeding gangs and spray service providers are trained by RSC agronomists to also deliver training and services to farmers
  • Individual farmers are coached through the development and implementation of farm development plans
  • Farmer Associations are supported to produce certified beans against the Touton/Cocobod Climate Smart Cocoa Model
(ii) Cocoa Rehabilitation
  • The project will develop a partnership with Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana (CRIG) to provide bud woods for grafting, train agronomists and directly rehabilitate farms by grafting
  • The RSCs will coordinate demand for seedlings, bud wood and coaching from farmers that wish to rehabilitate their farm
  • Rehabilitation schedules will be designed and implemented for farmers
(iii) Intensification and Productivity
  • Demo plots are established in every community for training and adoption purposes. The demos showcase different cost-effective ways of applying agrochemicals, fertilizer, compost and good agricultural practices
  • Production of agro-eco specific fertilizer recommendation
  • Production of cocoa appropriate compost using poultry manure

2. Improved service delivery efficiency for long-term, farm-level cocoa productivity increase

(i) Access to inputs and integrated services
  • Farmer shops are established at the RSCs where farmers can access region-specific, competitively-priced inputs.
  • Service Providers and Cocotechs sell the agrochemicals at the community level at the same price as in the RSC input shop
  • Agronomists are given ‘shops on wheels’ to sell agrochemicals to farmers
  • Other income-generating services such as pruning, weeding and spraying are delivered to farmers
(ii) Bancarisation
  • A bank is established inside or directly next to the RSCs
  • Farmers are provided with Farmer Business School training and thereafter given the opportunity to open bank accounts
  • Farmers are encouraged to develop savings culture
  • Input and personal loans can be provided to farmers to invest in their farms as well as to address personal challenges

3. Improved farmer resiliency with a focus on income diversification 

(i) Additional livelihoods
  • Vegetable and food crop demo plots are established at the RSC level for training purposes
  • Block farms and permaculture systems that integrate cassava, plantain and vegetable production are established at low valley bottoms in every community
  • Training in good practices, marketing, nutrition and gender are provided
  • Women are empowered and encouraged to take part in additional livelihood activities
  • RSCs support farmer groups to coordinate and market their produce

4. Improved climate change adaptation, mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions and increased carbon sequestration, and biodiversity protection in cocoa-forest landscape.

(i) Development of a Climate Smart Cocoa Standard
  • Development of the framework for implementation and validation of Ghana’s Standard for Climate Smart Cocoa
  • Development of a practice guide and manual for climate smart cocoa
  • Development of ecological zone-specific adaptation techniques
  • Development of Climate Smart Cocoa Management Plans and training for individual farmers and eco-zone
(ii) Development of a robust Web Interface for traceability to track/monitor cocoa and Forest
(iii) Development of a Sustainable Financing Model to catalyze investment into cocoa forest landscapes
(iv) Integration of the programme into the Emission Reduction Programme (ERP) of Ghana led by the Forestry Commission and Ghana Cocoa Board.

5. Improve economic development through landscape governance and land use planning 

(i) Development of a Landscape governance system
  • Set up a consortium to develop a governance system from national to landscape and community levels to enforce cocoa-forest protection
  • Set up a landscape governance compact where members commit to adhering to climate smart practices. RSCs coordinate a network of stakeholder activities that are linked to the supply chain and integrate them into the landscape governance system.
(ii) Development of landscape management plans
(iii) Support for the development of land use plans for cocoa production and biodiversity protection
(iv) Support to national platforms and dialogues on land tenure issues
(v) Development of a financially sustainable incentive mechanism for cocoa-forest landscape governance