The role of certifications in the development of cooperatives in Ivory Coast

Having arrived in the Ivory Coast about ten years ago, the certifications initially experienced difficulties in penetrating the Ivorian market because of their ignorance by actors in the agricultural world.

But very quickly and with the support of certain exporters, the first cooperatives will get involved in the process and obtain certifications.

Today, there are Rain forest alliance, Fairtrade, Organic and UTZ certifications. However, to be more effective on the ground, Rain Forest Alliance and UTZ have undertaken a merger which will take effect in January 2021.

Today many voices are rising to denounce the ineffectiveness of certifications, especially in achieving their initial objectives. In fact, the majority of certifications aim to offer a mechanism for traceability of agricultural products, thus making it possible to obtain quality products, respectful of the preservation of the environment. This certification result reassures consumers and markets about the origin of the products.

Unfortunately, it is clear that many players in the agricultural sector prefer to pay premiums to producers as a sign of reward for their efforts. Thus, these actors, and mainly cooperatives, are more attracted to gain than to advantages such as quality and environmental protection.

Even if the certification bodies plan to continue their activities, they have decided to reform their standards with restrictive measures by placing the producer as the main actor now.

It is in this context that Maat-ECG *, a German-based development organization designed by Africans, is preparing to launch ECG certification in several countries in Africa. Already active in Europe, ECG certification is positioned as the certification of the future. It is part of a dynamic of substantial reform of the actors committed to a common participation in the creation of wealth. It embodies the values of an Africa which has its salvation in unity.

ECG certification promotes sharing, solidarity, ecology, democracy, social justice and equality. It brings innovation through the diversity of beneficiaries. Whether agricultural or commercial, any business can apply for this certification. She is also interested in regions, municipalities and all forms of association. Its values that it conveys being integrated into all these entities.

With its pilot phase soon in Ivory Coast, Maat-ECG gives the beneficiaries of this certification the opportunity to benefit from the financing of Maat-INVEST which is an investment fund but also to integrate the vast and promising market of certified companies. ECG around the world.

Désiré Adon, Maat-ECG Representative in Ivory Coast
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