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Chocothon Phase I
Mission 2

Chocothon Phase II
Mission 1

A shared value platform for sustainable Ghanaian cocoa supply chains.

The private sector is increasingly aware that sustainable production and community development need to be at the core of corporate sourcing strategy as well as day-to-day operations. Cocoa is one of the commodities that present a range of significant environmental and social sustainability challenges that could ultimately lead to disruption of global supply. However, not one company, and indeed, not one stakeholder linked to the cocoa value chain can solve these issues on their own.

The CHOCOTHON initiative in Ghana aims to empower and connect cocoa farmers and create new opportunities for them and other value chain stakeholders in cocoa production and to reduce the supply disruption risks.

Based on the imperative that ‘true impact’ is only achieved through consensus, compromise and cooperation, Google Food Lab (GFL) and the International Trade Center (ITC) in collaboration with the Future Food Institute, the Business School Lausanne and the Googlers Give Global Leadership Program and with the support of Nestle, Barry Callebaut, the Food Inspiration Magazine and Food Tech Connect, decided to join forces with companies to empower and connect the Ghanaian cocoa farmers through a shared value sustainable cocoa supply chain platform. The innovative and collaborative approach of this initiative aims to:


Organize crowdsourcing experiences, share technical expertise, and develop approaches to identifying and solving potential obstacles to achievement of the platform imperative: Shared value within sustainable cocoa supply chains.

Conferences, workshops and meetings will allow the exchange of ideas, identification of challenges as well as the coordination of development and implementation of solutions that will benefit the platform members.


Bring actors together using cutting edge technology, by developing global public online tools and offline solutions such as applications that tackle obstacles to connect upstream to downstream actors in the cocoa supply chain.


The voices of cocoa farmers need to be heard and their interests need to be taken into account. This is a key success factor for companies that wish to secure a network of technically knowledgeable and empowered farmers to supply them with sustainable cocoa. The platform will build trust among the cocoa supply chain by helping to identify suitable farmer profiles for sustainable cocoa production. It will also help farmers to tackle the problems they face by developing customized training and tools that contribute to solving the sustainability challenges they are experiencing.


The members of the Chocothon platform have an approach that suggest delivering a combination of focused awareness-raising activities, targeted capacity building of multipliers (training of trainers) as well as capacity development activities to implement sustainable practices by beneficiaries for the Ghanaian cocoa sector, because of its dominance in cocoa production and the significant challenges it faces.

The Chocothon was carried out in two phases:

Phase I

Strengthen stakeholder platform (including service provider organizations) linked to sustainable practices in the cocoa sector in Ghana

The objective of this phase was twofold:
1) Raising awareness about the challenges faced among the cocoa supply chain in terms of implementing sustainable practices by communicating to the stakeholders (including service providing organizations) such as buyers, affiliated/identified producer organizations, national institutions and software developers, farming practices and technology available/challenges to make more efficient the implementation of those practices; and 2) Organizing training and support of multipliers to strength the farmers’ cooperatives to understand and implement sustainable practices.

Two missions are envisioned as part of phase 1. The first mission was already done from the 18th to 25th of January 2017. The second mission is planned for June/September 2017 aiming to follow up on activities organized during the first mission.

Phase II

Upstream capacity development related to the implementation of sustainable practices for Ghanaian primary cocoa producers

Upstream capacity development related to the implementation of sustainable practices for Ghanaian primary cocoa producers. This phase will be offered under circumstances where a cooperating local institution identified in phase 1 will display enough absorptive and logistical capacity to administer the technical assistance to the lower tiers of the supply chain and there is the budget availability to implement the work plan agreed among stakeholders.