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7 - The Role of Voluntary Sustainability Standards in Sustainable Livelihoods for Cocoa Farmers in Côte d’Ivoire

from Part III - Bottom-Up: Private Sector and Civil Society Initiatives on the Sustainable Development Goals

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  18 September 2020

Cosimo Beverelli
World Trade Organization
Jürgen Kurtz
European University Institute, Florence
Damian Raess
World Trade Institute, University of Bern
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Voluntary sustainability standards (VSS) play an important role in the structure of cocoa production in Côte d’Ivoire where climate change and land use pressures threaten to reduce supplies. The literature examining the participation of cocoa farmers in certification schemes has primarily emphasised the economic gains farmers perceive from joining these schemes and has offered less insight into the other determinants. These gains, however, are often subject to price volatility, offering only a partial explanation of what drives farmers to join and stay in certification programs. In this chapter, we evaluate household survey data to examine the characteristics of farmers who invest in VSS certification and the outcomes from adoption, including changes in production and management practices at the household level and subsequent environmental and economic outcomes. Using a Logit model, we identify factors that determine farmer adoption of VSS. The study found that socio-economic characteristics (age and sex of the household head, size of household, level of education of the head) and farm-specific factors such as size of land devoted to cocoa cultivation determine farmers’ adoption of certification programs in Côte d'Ivoire.

Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2020

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