Kuapa Kokoo Limited (KKL), a licensed buying company, has exceeded its cocoa production target even before end of the 2014/2015 crop season.

As at end of July 2015, the company has bought 720,000 bags of cocoa, against a target of 640,000 bags.

This was disclosed at the 21st Annual Delegates Conference of the Kuapa Kokoo Farmers Union in Kumasi.

“The Kuapa Kokoo Farmers Union will continue to support Kuapa Kokoo Limited by resourcing them and also ensuring that they adhere to Fairtrade standards. It is the duty and obligation of all members of the Union that we sell our produce to KKL in order to strengthen our own LBC,” said Madam Fatima Ali, President of the Union.

Despite operational challenges faced, the crop year saw a remarkable performance of Kuapa Kokoo and its activities since the company was established in 1993.

KKL purchased 983,823 bags (61,488.93 metric tonnes) of cocoa in the 2013/2014 main crop season and during the 2014 light crop season purchased 13,166 bags (822.88 metric tonnes).

The company’s revenue increased by 58% from Gh3,220,000 in 2013 to Gh5,088,000 in 2014. However, income over expenditure dropped by 80.9% from Gh230,735 in 2013 to Gh44,016 in 2014.

The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD) has commended the company for its performance and prompt payment of loans.

Kuapa Kokoo currently has 6.9% market share of Ghana’s cocoa output. Membership of its farmers union has increased to 100,500 across the Ashanti, Central, Eastern, Western and Brong Ahafo Regions.

The Kuapa Kokoo Farmers Union also owns the biggest share of 44% in Divine Chocolate Limited, based in the UK with a franchise in the USA.

Divine Chocolate sold £8.2 million of chocolate in the UK between July 2013 and June 2014, with a profit of £166,000. In the previous year, the company posted a turnover of over £5.6million and a profit of £44,000.

Shareholders are receiving a dividend of £57,000 – Kuapa Kokoo gets £24,000 (about Gh150,000) of the amount. The farmers received same dividend last year.

According to Managing Director of Divine, Sophi Tranchell, “the figures for 2014/2015 are looking even more promising. Our business in the USA, which was established in 2007, saw even better growth, and at the end of the year was close to making its first profit”.

The 21st Annual Delegates Conference was on the theme: “Deepening Decentralization through the Cooperative Way… A Vital Tool for Farmer Development”.