01 February 2021, Abidjan: UPL, a global leader in sustainable agriculture products and solutions,announced that it has joined the European Cocoa Association (ECA) as an Associate Member, building on existing memberships with the World Cocoa Foundation and the Cocoa and Forests Initiative.
For 35 years, UPL has worked closely with smallholder farmers throughout the entire cocoa value chain, developing a unique integrated offer of high quality inputs, training programmes, and services which have contributed to the sustainable development of the cocoa sector.
The ECA is a trade organisation headquartered in Belgium, which monitors and reports on regulatory developments of primary concern to the cocoa sector, including food safety, trade, logistics, sustainability, environment, and labelling. It brings together 28 effective members and 10 associate members, representing 40% of the world production of cocoa liquor, butter and powder. The ECA acts as an intermediary between the European Union and cocoa producing countries when issues of key concern for the cocoa sector are under discussion.
UPL’s membership of the ECA will continue this value chain mission at the industry level, making possible new partnerships with food chain stakeholders across the European community and working to improve the overall sustainability of the cocoa value chain between West & Central Africa and the European Union.
Commenting on UPL’s membership, Florent Clair, Head of Partnerships for Sustainability (P4S), UPL West & Central Africa, said: “UPL’s long-term presence in West Africa has allowed us to understand the importance of developing meaningful relationships with farmers and the wider industry alike. Our experience
shows that we can achieve more when we collaborate with all the players of the value chain, so we are delighted to join the ECA and continue to work as a trusted technical partner as we strive to make every cocoa bean more sustainable.
UPL’s work with the ECA will also complement existing work at the farmer level in cocoa-producing countries led through UPL’s existing memberships with the World Cocoa Association (WCA) and the Cocoa and Forests Initiative, of which UPL is the only agricultural inputs signatory.