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Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Global Cocoa Prices Push Chocolate to Highest Levels

Sun 03 Mar 2024 | 05:10 AM
Taarek Refaat

Global Chocolate prices recorded a significant jump, reaching their highest level ever in the past few days, which means that the most favorite sweet will be more expensive than ever before.

According to a report published by the British newspaper “Daily Mail”, global cocoa prices reached their highest levels ever a few days ago, after they began witnessing a wave of increases since the end of 2022, which had a significant impact on chocolate prices in retail stores.

The increased cost has become a concern for consumers facing rising prices, as well as for chocolate companies that have suffered a significant decline in profits year-on-year.

Daily Mail says that there are multiple factors involved in the reasons for the rapid rise in the price of cocoa in a short period of time.

Hershey Company's profits recorded successive declines during the last period, as the company suffered an 11.5% decline in profits during the fourth quarter of last year. Hershey also announced that it will cut 5% of its workforce.

However, the company expects to see 2% to 3% growth in net sales later this year.

Barry Callebaut, the world's largest chocolate maker, said it would lay off 18% of its workforce, which amounts to about 2,500 workers.

This increase in prices can be partly attributed to weather conditions in the areas where cocoa is grown, where, for example, weather patterns have led to extremely high temperatures, rainfall and drought in cocoa producing areas since 2023, affecting production.

The weather has caused dry temperatures in West Africa, where three-quarters of the world's supply of cocoa beans is grown.

Ghana and Ivory Coast, two of the largest cocoa producing countries, have been severely affected by weather patterns for reasons other than crop destruction.

Blackpod disease and cocoa bud virus spread throughout Ghana and Ivory Coast last year during heavy rains.

"Latest data showed Ivory Coast farmers shipped 1.16 MMT of cocoa to ports from October 1 to February 25, down 32% from the same time last year," according to Trading Economics