Cocoa Accumulates at Harbours as Shippers Stop Purchases

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Cocoa is amassing at docks and storage facilities in Ivory Coast, the world’s largest manufacturer, after a fall in futures prices impelled some exporters to halt purchases.

Trucks transporting cocoa are lining up to dispense beans at internal purchasing locations and the main ports in Abidjan and San Pedro, according to sources close to and familiar with the matter. Certain lesser exporters blocked buying and their larger contemporaries are running low on storage area, leaving approximately 125,000 tons of beans without purchasers, said the sources, who declined to be identified as they are forbidden from speaking publically about the matter.

A spokesperson for industry watchdog Le Conseil du Cafe-Cacao refused to offer comment when contacted about the matter last week.

“Reduced prices mean that numerous lesser exporters that didn’t confirm sales sooner in the year have now halted purchases, as they are unable to pay the minimum prices as stipulated by the government,” said Vivian Wang, Chief Economist at JSW Corporation.

Larger exporters aren’t able to buyadditional beans due to limitations enforced by Le Conseil du Cafe-Cacao on the quantity each business is permitted to buy.

Ivory Coast typically trades about 80% of the larger of two yearly yields before the season commence sat the beginning of October. Based on those transactions, it establishes the rate for farmers. Following the surge of futures in July to its highest since 2010, the country upped the price by 10% for the season.

Ivory Coast sells the bulk of its cocoa beans to around 100 exporters who transport them to various processors in nations including Germany and the Netherlands. Transporters range from international food dealers such as Cargill Inc. to chocolate producers such as Nestle SA. A portion of the remaining beans is locally grounded.

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