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Unseasonable Rains In Ivory Coast Lift Cocoa Outlook, Farmers Say

By Reuters
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Unseasonable Rains In Ivory Coast Lift Cocoa Outlook, Farmers Say

Unseasonable rains in most of Ivory Coast's cocoa regions last week are expected to boost both the main crop and the April-to-September mid-crop, farmers said.

The world's top cocoa producer is in its dry season, which runs officially from mid-November to March when rains are usually scarce.

Farmers across the country welcomed the precipitation, which should see the October-to-March main crop finish strongly with beans of good quality.

The weather will also help get the mid-crop off to a strong start and to be abundant, they said, adding that many beans continued to leave the bush.

Impact Of Rainfall

"It's rare to have this level of water during the dry season. This will help the mid-crop develop well," said Jean Boua, who farms near the eastern region of Abengourou, where 19.5 millimetres (mm) fell last week, 16 mm above the five-year average.

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In the western region of Soubre and the southern regions of Agboville and Divo, where rainfall was also above average, farmers said they were happy as the weather would improve the quality of beans in February and March.

In the centre-western region of Daloa, where rainfall was below average, and in the central regions of Bongouanou and Yamoussoukro, where rains where above average, farmers said flowers were turning into small pods for the mid-crop.

"There are still a lot of big pods on the trees and the mid-crop looks good," said Claude Attesse, who farms near Bongouanou, where 7.6 mm of rain fell last week, 5.8 mm above the five-year average.

Average weekly temperatures ranged between 27.5 and 30.6 degrees Celsius.

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