History of ABOCFA
ABOCFA is the only Organic Fairtrade Certified Cocoa Cooperative in Ghana, having obtained Organic and Fairtrade certifications in 2009 and 2011 respectively. ABOCFA was initially registered as the Aponoapono Biakoye Organic Cocoa Farmers Association, and is now officially the ABOCFA Co-operative Cocoa Farmers and Marketing Society Limited.
ABOCFA was registered under the Registrar General’s department in 2010, with fewer than 300 members, and fully transitioned to a cooperative in 2015. As of 2023, total membership is 1156, comprising 854 men and 302 women. The total farm area for all members is 1683.30 Ha, and production capacity for the 2022/23 cocoa season was 1314.58 MT organic Fairtrade cocoa.
The cooperative is a First Grade Organization working in 15 hamlets. The ABOCFA operational office is located at Aponoapono near Suhum in the Eastern Region of Ghana. It currently has a staff of 23, including the Cooperative Manager, Child Labour Team, IT Administrator Technical, Officers and an Accountant, who work with the Board to implement the strategic direction of the organization.
Currently, Abocfa has employed 45 Service providers which provide services like Weeding, Spraying of organic pesticides and fertilizers, Harvesting, Pruning and Breaking of pods. The farmers pay half of the cost and Abocfa pays the remaining half of the services provided by the services providers. The money accrued is used to pay the services providers.
Through the collaborative effort of its partners, ABOCFA joined Fairtrade in 2012 after a successful FLO-CERT Audit. The cooperative has grown its Fairtrade and Organic sales to a level where 80% of ABOCFA beans were sold on Organic and Fairtrade terms in 2021/22. This has brought additional revenue into the organization, which has contributed to improved living conditions for members
Whereas initially ABOCFA relied upon one commercial partner, the cooperative now sells to multiple partners, including Tony’s Chocolonely, MIA, TCHO, Uncommon Cacao, Crafting Market, Taza, Kul Chocolate and among others.
Since ABOCFA’s inception, members and executives have worked to realize a vision of becoming an independent farmer-based organization, and a leading supplier of quality Organic and Fairtrade cocoa beans.
Our mission is to equip our farmers with productivity and management skills that improve their livelihoods, and generate additional income from cocoa premiums and other sustainable sources. We continually strive to be self-reliant, and to provide the best services to our members. Above all, ABOCFA aims to reduce poverty and ensure that all members attain a living income.
ABOCFA shared values
Staff & Governance
Stephen Ashia is Manager of ABOCFA Cooperative Cocoa Farmers and Marketing Society Limited. He is responsible for training ABOCFA farmer members and executives on Environmental and Social Practices, as well as Organic and Fairtrade Standards. He liaises with internal and external partners, and commercial clients.
Stephen is a Master Trainer for Organic, Fairtrade and Rainforest Alliance Certifications. He holds Bachelor of Science in Agriculture from the University of Cape Coast, and a Master of Science in Agroforestry from Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology.