There are 5 million to 6 million cocoa farmers who rely on the cocoa bean for their livelihood. The cocoa bean grows. Farmers grow cocoa trees on small farms in tropical environments, within 15-20 degrees north and south of the equator. Cocoa farmers must protect the cocoa trees from the wind and sun. They also fertilize the soil and prevent the cocoa beans from pests and disease. The cocoa farmer will see cocoa pods on their trees by fifth year.
The life of a cocoa farmer is not an easy one. There are about 2 million small-scale cocoa farmers In Ghana and Ivory Coast. This area produces about 70% of the world’s cocoa beans.Most cocoa farmers live in extreme poverty with average cocoa farmer making about 80 cents a day.
Growing cocoa is also really hard work. It is one of the few crops that is grown and harvested purely by hand. The big cocoa pods that contain the cocoa beans are hacked open using clubs or machetes. The beans are then cleaned, dried and allowed to ferment. They are then packaged to be shipped to processing plants all around the world.
Cocoa farmers work hard and live in poverty. Most cocoa farmers have no idea what the beans are used for. They have never tasted chocolate!