Women in cocoa explore viable options to increase incomes

Women cocoa farmers contribute half of the labor associated with the production of the commodity yet they control meager incomes from the trade. Solidaridad and partners explored viable options available within the cocoa value chain for women to earn additional incomes to improve their livelihoods.

Women in cocoa have been encouraged to develop skills to earn additional incomes from cocoa. In Ghana, women’s labor contribution to the cocoa value chain has mainly centered on farming and selling of the commodity. However, women can earn more from the value chain to improve their livelihoods. 

Solidaridad West Africa, through the Women in Cocoa and Chocolate Network (WINCC), organized a forum to help women to explore viable options to improve their incomes in the cocoa sector. This was done with support from the Ghana Cocoa Board and partners.

Speaking at the forum, Nana Adwoa Dokua, an Ambassador for the Women in Cocoa and Chocolate Network and a Board Member of the Ghana Cocoa Board entreated the women to look beyond growing and selling cocoa beans as the only source of income in the sector. She noted women could earn additional income by processing cocoa by-products including the husks and sweating into various products for local consumption. 

Nana Adwoa Dokua shared key insights with women cocoa farmers



Almost 300 female cocoa farmers attended the forum organized by WINCC as part of activities marking International Women’s Day.  It was under the theme, “Balance for better for sustainable cocoa production, consumption and livelihoods”. The event provided a platform for women in the cocoa sector to connect, learn and share lessons that ultimately empower them.

The Country Representative of Solidaridad in Ghana, Suzan-Hermina Yemidi applauded women for their critical contribution to the cocoa sector in Ghana.

She noted as part of supporting the cocoa consumption in Ghana, Solidaridad through the Women in Cocoa and Chocolate Network, is exploring additional ways of empowering women to develop products from cocoa. 
Suzan-Hermina Yemidi, Country Representative of Solidaridad in Ghana addressing the women 

Dr. Esther Gyedu, a Research Scientist from the New Product Development Unit of the Cocoa Research Institute of Ghana gave additional insight into the types and scale of products from which women could produce cocoa in commercial quantities. 

Dr. Esther Gyedu showing a sample of a product made from the cocoa husk


Solidaridad organized the forum as part of efforts to enhance economic opportunities for women and to engender their involvement in supply chains and business development. 


In October 2018, Solidaridad and the Ghana Cocoa Board launched the Ghana chapter of the Women in Cocoa and Chocolate Network. The network creates a platform to promote issues of mutual interest for women working in cocoa and chocolate to connect, learn and become inspired to take on a leadership role.

Learn more about sustainability for cocoa

Published by: Solidaridad West Africa