Reykia Fick, media relations manager for the certification board, told ConfectioneryNews the finding sent an important message to the confectionery industry on how these premiums were invested.
“What’s really important is that it shows farmers are making very wise decisions about how premiums are spent,” she said.
Fairtrade International provides premiums of $200 per tonne - paid directly to farmer organizations and managed at "the sole discretion" of producers through their own general assemblies.
However, the report also found that farmer cooperatives felt more long-term agreements on sourcing would enable them to continue this pattern of growth.
Paying a premium, spending a premium
Fick said that the cocoa industry was looking for more transparency on how these premiums were being spent, and added that it was important for farmers to have a strong voice when communicating this to the industry.
She said the report evidenced that these programs made commercial sense for the industry and not only ethical sense.
“We also believe that as farmers invest more in productivity, the need to spend the premium on cash payments will go down,” she said.