Ivory Coast: Nestle’s Genetically Modified Cocoa Trees–“Benevolence” with Strings

[Nestle’s “gift” of revitalization comes with a price–Nestle will have first rights to the product. — Frontlines ed.] 

Nestle gives farmers disease-resistant cocoa trees

Wed, Jul 13 2011

By Ange Aboa

BONOUA, Ivory Coast (Reuters) – Nestle on Wednesday ramped up its distribution of disease-resistant cocoa trees to farmers in Ivory Coast, part of a plan to boost productivity per hectare and improve the notoriously poor quality of the top grower’s cocoa beans.

The world’s biggest food maker, which has distributed some 140,000 saplings since 2009, said it will hand out 600,000 saplings by the end of the month and a further one million next year in a bid to raise productivity on farms.

Diseases and aging trees mean Ivorian cocoa yields are amongst the lowest in the world at less than 500 kg per hectare compared to 2 tonnes in Indonesia and 1.5 tonnes in Ghana.

The Swiss company has a policy of giving away trees but retains the priority to buy the cocoa produced from them through exporters ADM Cocoa, Cargill, COCAF-Ivoire-Noble and Outspan-Olam. Continue reading

ECOWAS defends France’s role in Gbagbo’s arrest; Coalition Against Foreign Intervention in Africa protests

Apr 11, 2011

President of ECOWAS Commission, Ambassador Victor Gbeho, has cleared France of any wrongdoing in the capture of embattled Former President of Ivory Coast, Laurent Gbagbo.

Reports remain unclear over who actually captured Mr. Gbagbo.

Earlier reports in sections of the media had indicated that French Special Forces captured the Former Leader and handed him over to pro Ouattara forces.

But France has denied the reports. Continue reading

French Neo-Colonialism in Africa after Independence

[August 7, the Ivory Coast celebrated the 50th anniversary of its independence from France.  An army parade marked the day, amid speculation that the national elections, now postponed for several years, may soon occur.  What has become of the hopes for independence?  How do they measure against the reality of today?  And what needs to be done?  These are questions being asked, and debated, in the 17 countries of Africa which are celebrating their 50 years of independence in 2010.  This article, published a year ago, discusses the legacy of French colonialism and neo-colonialism in the Ivory Coast.-ed.]

Ivory Coast soldiers parade take part in a celebration commemorating 50 years of Ivorian independence as they carry the flags of African nations also celebrating their 50th independence day at the presidential palace in Abidjan

by Godsway Yao Sappor

ModernGhana.com, February 05, 2009


French Neo-Colonialist ideas in Africa after Independence (Cote D’Ivoire a Case Study)

The brutal legacy of European colonialism and neo-colonialism as forms of imperialism manifests itself in various ways in Africa. In the 19th century, French imperialism colonized more African territory than any other of its European counterparts. Many countries colonized by France gained their formal independence in the early 1960s due to heroic anti-colonial national liberation struggles that spread throughout the African continent. Despite the formal declaration of independence for the colonized countries, France among other colonizing European countries, maintains deep economic, military and administrative ties to almost all its former colonies among them Cote D’Ivoire. Like so much of Africa, Cote D’Ivoire is rich in natural resources, especially oil, natural gas, cocoa beans, and coffee. Despite this abundance of resources, the per capita income in 1996 was only $600.

When independence was granted to colonized African states, many were happy because they thought the Colonial masters had packed their package and were gone for good. The euphoria of independence for Cote D’Ivoire, just like most African countries, lasted up to the early 1980s. New imperialists and the former colonial master have made a triumphant comeback in Ivory Coast in the form of neo-colonialism. Until recently, Neo-colonialism has been chiefly associated with political and economic matters. Today, it is also inextricably tangled with so many other things such as conflict resolution and peace-keeping in so many African countries. The comeback of the colonial masters to Ivory Coast, just like any other African country, is keeping the country artificially poor. Continue reading