Cocoa financial model handed over to ministry of agriculture

Dr. Kyra Paul, PS in the Ministry of Agriculture accepts the coca financial model from CREAD CEO Francine Baron

The Ministry of Blue and Green Economy, Agriculture and National Food Security now has an additional tool to assist in data management and strategic planning for the cocoa sector with the recent handing over of a cocoa financial model presented to the Ministry at the start of a training workshop organised by the Cocoa Cluster Development Project of Dominica and held on Thursday 17th June 2021 for extension staff, data and information officers, finance agents, farmers and other cocoa stakeholders who will be putting this financial tool to use.

Dr. Kyra Paul, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, received the Cocoa Financial Model from Francine Baron, CEO of the Climate Resilience Execution Agency for Dominica (CREAD), the organisation which developed the model.

In mentioning government’s Cocoa Rehabilitation Project, Dr. Paul pointed that a Cocoa Coordinator has been employed and plants are being propagated to meet annual targets of 25,000 and increases in acreage within the sector which has seen  “small but promising growth.”

Baron, in her remarks at the training workshop indicated CREAD’s satisfaction in developing this model, “CREAD was pleased to have been able to play a part in helping farmers understand the underlying economics of cocoa production. We were able to develop a financial model that provides the farmer with an accurate assessment of expected yield and profit based on their output and outlay of capital and resources.”

“Our hope is that by providing farmers with a clearer understanding of all the cost inputs, as well as giving them a view of potential revenues, they can plan appropriately, manage the investments necessary to establish cocoa as a viable and financially rewarding crop, and undertake the long-term financial planning that is an essential part of their resilience,” she adds.

The development of this financial model is in line with CREAD’s mandate to help Dominica become the world’s first climate resilient nation, with a focus that includes the development of solutions for creating sustainable and resilient agriculture.

Dominica, an award-winning cocoa destination, produces 100% fine and flavoured cocoa and is one of the few countries in the world who have been able to achieve International Cocoa Organization (ICCO) certification.  The country, which has a long history of cocoa production, is well positioned to capitalise on the high-end global cocoa market, which delivers the highest return for farmers.  The financial model developed by Economic Lead at CREAD, Brent Barnette; was created to serve as an investment tool to enable the Cocoa Cluster to implement change management initiatives with respect to improved investment planning and farm management as its members look to penetrate the global cocoa market.

The Cocoa Cluster was founded in 2019.  Funded by Compete Caribbean Partnership Facility (CCPF) with the Dominica Export Import Agency (DEXIA) as the implementing Agency, the Cluster aims to build on the foundation laid by the Government’s Cocoa Rehabilitation Project and seeks to further drive the expansion and development of this promising sector.  The cocoa financial model also aligns with the Cluster’s focus on change management and data management two of its five areas of improvements, the others being pre- and post-harvest management, labelling and marketing, and product transformation and development.

Wayne Elliott, Coordinator, Productivity and Innovation in Caribbean Firms and Clusters at CCPF, highlighted the organisation’s goals to support firms to “grow, compete, innovate and to enter new sectors and markets and to promote an environment that enables innovation and growth.” He also spoke to the successes that were being achieved through clustering initiatives in Dominica and encouraged attendees to continue to utilise collaborative efforts to derive greater benefits and share risks.

Cocoa Cluster Manager, Ms. Taletha Laudat stressed on the importance of “de-risking in agriculture investments for improved efficiency and profits, and how critical analytics, innovation and sustainable financing tools can improve the competitiveness of the cocoa industry.”

DEXIA General Manager Paula Platsko expressed further satisfaction with the exercise by stating, “We are quite pleased with CREAD’s support of the Project, and their agreement to develop the Cocoa Financial Model upon the request of our Executing Agency, Compete Caribbean. This Model aims to support our national resilience objectives, including economic thinking in cocoa farming decisions.”

Mr. Barnette, during his interactive presentation, highlighted the various aspects of the model and feedback was given from all participants on ease of use and applicability to real life situations.  With this model cocoa farmers can plot in a range of data based on various scenarios using the results to get a better understanding of their future costs and revenues. The model can be used with other high-value crops and thus is not limited to just cocoa farmers, a feature the extension staff present were excited about. Further, financial enterprises now have evidentiary data that they can use when make lending decisions, and the representatives from the AID Bank and NDFD were encouraged by this aspect.

The existence of this financial tool and its availability to Dominica’s farmers, therefore means they are today better equipped to make sound investment decisions in cocoa farming.  When considering the strides made by the Government under the Cocoa Rehabilitation Project, and the CCDP in capacity building, institutional strengthening and genetic material accession; this tool is further helping to bridge the gap between agriculture, business and finance.

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13 Comments

  1. Victor Seyram
    June 25, 2021

    Please is the financial document available to download?

    ADMIN: We have passed on your request to the author. We will provide that information here once it has been received.

  2. If we knew better
    June 24, 2021

    What does Dr. Kyra Paul know about agriculture though? Is she qualified and experienced in agriculture and agribusiness?

  3. Kubuli kid
    June 24, 2021

    Coincidence that DBS did you programme highlighted rise and fall of various crops on island. These include lime, vanilla and banana. I hope stakeholder took into account factors which caused failure of similar programs. These initiatives are quite costly and if managed properly can actually have positive impacts on our economy, however continuity is always an issue. We continue to operate in the “Tou shoo you flamm” mentality… Hoping for the best

  4. If we knew better
    June 23, 2021

    What happened to the coffee and cocoa plant in Portsmouth?

    • Mary
      June 24, 2021

      It’s being used as a cow shed and infested by rats. The same as the Moroccan hotel and the geothermal. Wasting state resources is all this rogue government is good at.

      • If we knew better
        June 24, 2021

        These people like to say they involved in this and that with minimal impact. Alll talk. all players expect miracles to happen, but agriculture still goes nowhere. Aid here and there help donations all kind of things coming in for agriculture, but still the sector hasnt elevated.

  5. PRO
    June 23, 2021

    im gonna be positive and say that im crossing my fingers that the government is attempting to pivot ( after 20 + years ) from bananas & limes to Cocoa .

  6. Accountant
    June 23, 2021

    Look at these clown pulling more wool over the eyes of Dominicans. Look at the article: words, words and more words… what’s missing as per usual: FIGURES and FACTS.

  7. Ibo France
    June 23, 2021

    This DLP administration under Mr. Skerrit’s misdirection always paints a rosy future of all their proposed endeavor (airport, geothermal energy, Roseau, tourism, agriculture, health care, infrastructure). All these fantastic plans and promises never materialize. This grand talk about producing copious amounts of cocoa for export is just that, TALK.

    Your actions are so loud that I don’t hear you when you talk.

  8. Garcon
    June 22, 2021

    Hmm. And it goes on. The minister’s daughter is made permanent secretary. In days of old when I worked in Dominica permanent secretaries where individuals who had worked in the public service for several years and had thoroughly understood the system. Today ministers children, cousins and friends are just put in these critical positions. Yet we wonder why we are not making progress. Alas. When?

  9. Marie
    June 22, 2021

    Workshops, plenty of talk and a little dose of propaganda that’s all we get from these clowns. I wonder if and when we actually see results. Poor Dominica!

    • Ibo France
      June 23, 2021

      Soooooooo true! They are BIG on TALK and small on action. Dominica has the most dysfunctional and unproductive public service. Toooooooo many square pegs in round holes. This maladministration rewards incompetence with top positions in the public service.

    • %
      June 23, 2021

      @ Marie
      I am surprised Francine did not call upon the people to help protect the CBI…
      Seem like Dominica’s wealth and resources only belong to about 5% of the population.
      They have broken down everything, but they want to be where they are forever!!

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