“COPEC,” as some in government and industry have called the new partnership, is already causing confusion and unease in the $107.3 billion global chocolate market. The new premium, the second attempt to create a cartel in the cocoa market in the last 50 years, is expected to come into force in October. According to figures from the EU and the Ivorian Ministry of Forestry, more than 80% of Côte d`Ivoire`s forests disappeared between 1960 and 2010. Cocoa is considered to be the main driver of deforestation in the country and much of the cocoa exported from Côte d`Ivoire is illegally grown in forest reserves and protected national parks. Many of these “protected” areas have significantly reduced their original forest habitats. This is the result of cocoa farmers illegally entering these forests, clearing the under brush, planting cocoa, and then setting fire to the roots of the superiors, so that they can be destroyed and that more sunlight can be granted to cocoa plants. Cocoa production and the acquisition of many rainforests in Côte d`Ivoire have also seriously threatened wildlife. Côte d`Ivoire was once known internationally as a jewel of biodiversity in the forest region of West Africa and as a nation with great biological wealth, biodiversity and indedemnism, but illegal cocoa production has done worse.  Deforestation due to cocoa production also occurs in the largest chimpanzee life basins in Côte d`Ivoire. Studies on the impact of cocoa production on primate populations in protected areas showed that 13 of the 23 protected areas studied had lost all their primate populations.  Like OPEC, whose control of crude oil production has largely fuelled world oil prices since 1960, the decision of the world`s two largest cocoa producers to join forces is expected to increase the cost of sweets, ice cream and cakes. The chocolate block with two nations decided to charge an additional $400 a tonne of cocoa, which currently costs about $2,500 a tonne.
“According to the 2015 edition of the Cocoa Barometer, a biennial report that examines the profitability of cocoa, published by a consortium of non-profit organizations, the average Ghanaian farmer made only $84 a day during the 2013/14 growing season and farmers in Côte d`Ivoire only $50. As a result, they are well below the World Bank`s new standard of $1.90 per day for extreme poverty, even though the 13% increase in cocoa prices last year is taken into account. In this context, the challenge of eradicating child labour is immense and the newly discovered commitment of chocolate companies to increase investment in cocoa communities is not entirely sufficient.