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Ivory Coast Cocoa Welcomes Rain

FILE: People drying cocoa beans in Djigbadji inside the Rapides Grah, Ivory Coast. Taken 1.7.2021

Ivory Coast cocoa farmers welcomed light rainfall last week, which will be good for the development of the October-to-March main crop, they said on Monday.

Rainfall was above average in the western region of Soubre and the southern region of Divo, where farmers also gave a positive report.

"Everything is going well on the plantations. There are lots of big pods that are ripening for the main crop," said Kouassi Kouame in Soubre, where 26.1 mm fell last week, 11.8 mm above the average.

"The main crop is looking good, and the mid-crop will finish with enough beans," said Daniel Behibro, a farmer in the outskirts of Daloa, where 17.1 millimeters of rain fell last week.

Ivory Coast, the world's top cocoa producer, is in its rainy season which runs from April to mid-November.

Average temperatures ranged from 22.8 to 24.7 degrees Celsius last week.

Farmers said more rain and sun would be needed in the next two months to boost the size and quality of the main crop.

However, rainfall was below average last week in the southern region of Agboville, the eastern region of Abengourou, the centre-western region of Daloa and the central regions of Bongouanou and Yamoussoukro.

Farmers in those regions said soil moisture remained high and the dryer conditions would help prevent plant disease.