Wednesday, October 19th, we gathered at Google London headquarters for Chocothon’s kickoff.
The Chocothon project aims to empower and connect Ghanaian cocoa farmers, assure sustainable supply, and create new opportunities for them and other value chain stakeholders in cocoa production while reducing supply disruption risks. Derived from the term “hackathon” and like its namesake, the Chocothon initiative brings together diverse players to create a shared value platform for a sustainable cocoa supply chain.
Among the main partners who joined the kickoff event there was Thomas Camenzind, Regional Food Program Manager of Google Food Lab, who described the project and the main purpose behind the Chocothon. Sandra Cabrera, Associate Market Analyst at International Trade Center (ITC), who explained the farmer-oriented initiatives underway to solve the supply-side problems within the cocoa farming industry. Finally we were joined by Sara Roversi, founder of the Future Food Institute (FFI), who gave an overview of what a hackathon is and in which way the hackathon methodology can contribute to make true impacts in the cocoa sector. Last but not least, Alessio d’Antino, Crowdfooding Founder, explained of the crowdfunding model behind the project.
The event ended with the tasting of the delectable treats from Dark Sugars chocolate boutique. Owner, Fatou Mendy, talked about the journey of the cocoa bean from tree to tummy, with a specific focus on the West African cocoa farmers’ perspective. Bottom line: “Cocoa is disappearing. Why? Because farmers are unhappy. Make them happy.”