Fairtrade Fortnight - Rosine Deserves
Monday, 4 March 2019 | Joanna
Rosine Bekoin is a mum of five, cocoa farmer and member of CAYAT co-operative in Côte d’Ivoire. Rosine is slightly unusual as cocoa farmers in Côte d’Ivoire go – because she owns and runs her 2.5-hectare farm, which was passed to her from her mother. Normally it is men who own farms and earn the income from them. Rosine first sold her cocoa as Fairtrade in 2016. Having received training in quality and good agricultural practices from CAYAT, her production increased by 50 percent from 1 tonne in 2017 to 1.5 tonnes in 2018.
Watch Rosine's video here
Rosine was the inspiration behind the Fairtrade Foundation's hidden hot chocolate cafe:
For one week only, Rosine's Hot Chocolate Salon popped up in London. Hidden inside an unassuming newsagents, as secret button would transport you into a West African themed speakeasy-style cafe.
Rosine’s Hot Chocolate Salon was named after a cocoa farmer from Côte d’Ivoire and told the story behind our favourite chocolate bars and why cocoa farmers like Rosine deserve a living income.
There were three truly delicious hot chocolates on the menu, each named after a Fairtrade cocoa farmer.
Costing just £1.86 each, this represented a day’s living income for a cocoa farmer. That is what they need to earn in order to live a dignified life. (Currently they earn less than half of that; around 74p a day.)
These were the three hot chocolates on offer:
- The Rosine - a delicious hot chocolate recipe with maple syrup, created by Melissa Hemsley
- The Leocadie - a decadent, salted, vegan hot chocolate recipe, created by Tess Ward
- The Genevieve - a dairy-free coconut and baobab hot chocolate recipe, created by Tom Hunt
Cocoa farmers typically work grueling days yet earn insufficient money to provide the basics for their families or give opportunities to their children - and female cocoa farmers like Rosine carry the greatest burden. They work in the fields, look after children, carry water and transport the cocoa beans to market, often with fewer rights than men.
Millions of farmers who grow our food in the developing world aren't being paid what they deserve and as the world cocoa price has collapsed, farmers are now even poorer than they were before. The living income in Ivory Coast is £1.86 a day, yet a typical farmer earns around 74p.
Fairtrade Fortnight’s She Deserves campaign aims to establish a living income for women cocoa growers in West Africa. Fairtrade standards ensure that women have a voice in the community, are represented in decision-making and benefit from the increased value of Fairtrade sales.
All money raised by the salon will help fund programmes such as the Women’s School of Leadership in Côte d’Ivoire. The project aims to empower women cocoa farmers in West Africa to become business owners, members of farming groups and leaders in their communities.
Julia Nicoara, from the Fairtrade Foundation, said: “We’re excited to launch the immersive Rosine’s Hot Chocolate Salon, an experience that allows chocolate lovers interact with the very people who make their favourite delight possible. This is not just any pop up; visitors are immersed in the lives of the cocoa farmers behind a bar of chocolate and every time you buy a Fairtrade certified product you are making a real difference.”