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Programs

CocoaLink – Connecting Cocoa Communities

CocoaLink is a mobile technology service that delivers timely farming, social and marketing information to cocoa farmers in 15 communities in western Ghana to improve incomes and livelihoods. Cocoa farmers who subscribe to CocoaLink receive and share practical information via SMS text and voice messages with industry experts and other farmers. CocoaLink is available to any Ghanaian with a cell phone, with messages delivered in English or the local language.

Africa Worldwide 

 

Impact Metrics

  • 100,000

    SMS messages delivered through CocoaLink

  • 3,720

    subscribers registered

  • 95%

    of registered subscribers are cocoa farmers

  • 40%

    of registered farmers attended community farming & literacy training

Program Dates:

2011 – 2013 (Pilot Phase)

Country:

Ghana

Project Overview:

WCF enlisted public and private partners in the communications technology, community outreach and education sectors to develop and pilot CocoaLink – Connecting Cocoa Communities.  CocoaLink is a mobile technology service that delivers timely farming, social and marketing information to cocoa farmers in 15 communities in western Ghana to improve incomes and livelihoods. Cocoa farmers who subscribe to CocoaLink receive and share practical information via SMS text and voice messages with industry experts and other farmers. CocoaLink is available to any Ghanaian, with access to a cell phone, with messages delivered in English or the local language.  

How CocoaLink Works:

  • CocoaLink builds on the success of WCF’s ongoing education and literacy programs in Ghana.
  • The Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana, the research division of COCOBOD, provides pertinent agricultural and social messages to CocoaLink.
  • COCOBOD delivers the core messaging on improved farming practices, farm safety, child labor, crop disease prevention, post-harvest production and marketing.
  • Farmers enrolled in the CocoaLink program are able to share what they learn and ask specific questions about issues they face.  
  • Each participating community has direct access to local cocoa extension agents and on-the-ground trainers to help ensure program success.
  • Key metrics will include literacy training, cocoa quantity measures, and improved farmer incomes.

Project Facts & Figures:

  • Ghana’s mobile phone network covers approximately 85% of the country’s geography
  • More than 65% of rural residents in Ghana have access to mobile phones
  • CocoaLink has reached more than 8,000 Ghanaian cocoa farmers and community members in 15 communities in Ghana’s Western Region
  • Within three years, the program is expected to grow to reach 100,000 farmers
  • WCF’s members represent more than 80% of world’s global cocoa market, including major branded manufactures, cocoa processors, and supply chain managers
  • Cocoa is Ghana’s largest cash crop
  • Ghana is the world’s second-biggest cocoa producer
  • Ghana has more than 700,000 cocoa farmers
  • Ghana’s first cocoa farm was established in 1879 in the Eastern Region with Amelonado cacao from Brazil 

Contributors: World Cocoa Foundation (WCF), The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), and The Hershey Company

Implementing Partners: World Education Inc. in collaboration with CENCOSAD and DreamOval Ltd

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