Indications of drier-than-normal weather in parts of the cocoa producing region in Africa have strengthened in the latest predictions, the Cocoa Climate Team at weather forecaster Climate42 said in a report on Thursday. “There is now a general tendency to slightly favour below-average rainfalls over the next five months over most of the African cocoa regions,” the report said.
The probability of reduced rainfall is greatest over eastern Nigeria and Cameroon, as well as over eastern Ivory Coast and Ghana in July-August, it said. Below-average precipitation before mid-July could lower the resilience of the cocoa trees to the little dry season in Ivory Coast and Ghana, the world’s two largest producers of cocoa, the report said. “These dry anomalies are thus of concern for a significant portion of the next main crop and call for very careful monitoring of the precipitation in the coming months,” Climate42 said.