Conclusion of the 2024 World Cocoa Conference in Brussels: towards new commitments for sustainable cocoa

The fifth edition of the World Cocoa Conference (WCC), jointly organized by the FPS Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation and the International Cocoa Organization (ICCO), concluded this Wednesday 24 April at The Square conference center in Brussels.

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The fifth edition of the World Cocoa Conference (WCC), jointly organized by the FPS Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation and the International Cocoa Organization (ICCO), concluded this Wednesday 24 April at The Square conference center in Brussels.

The delegates of the 52 member states of the ICCO welcomed the agreement in principle reached on a text establishing new commitments for the years to come in order to jointly face the current challenges of the cocoa economy. This text – which will be entitled “Brussels Declaration” – will take effect once the internal decision-making processes specific to the European Union and certain ICCO member states have been finalized.

The future Brussels Declaration underlines the need for sustainable cocoa based on achieving a living income for cocoa farmers. Other elements are highlighted such as taking into account environmental and social costs, the particular role of women, the interest of microfinance, reforestation and agroforestry, or the importance of social protection. The text also emphasizes the interconnection between the problem of poverty and its consequences, such as deforestation and child labor, and calls for the establishment of a specific legal framework on environmental and human rights due diligence of companies. Finally, a mechanism for monitoring the implementation of the commitments enshrined in the Declaration will be put in place by the ICCO.

Belgium, host of the WCC 2024, is delighted to have contributed significantly to the success of this conference and to the new commitments that will result from it for the actors of the cocoa economy with a view to obtaining sustainable cocoa, with a fair pricing throughout its value chain.

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