Jacob Korner was farming cocoa near the village of Aponoapono in Ghana’s Eastern region, when he saw an opportunity to do things differently.

Though Jacob was busy on his farm, he volunteered for a new organization called ABOCFA. ABOCFA’s mission was to reduce poverty and increase the self-reliance of its cocoa farmer members.

It would achieve this by obtaining both organic and Fairtrade certifications, making the cooperative unique in Ghana at the time.

Jacob recruited neighbors to join, and ran for the position of Secretary in the first ABOCFA elections. He went on to serve in that role for eight years.


A cocoa farmer from Ghana, Jacob Kornor, stands next to cocoa trees.

Jacob Kornor, founding member of ABOCFA Organic & Fairtrade Cocoa Cooperative; photo by Kristy Leissle


A livelihood enhanced


That was thirteen years ago. Since then, thanks to ABOCFA, Jacob has earned a combined organic and Fairtrade premium for all the cocoa he grows that is classified as export quality. At its peak, this premium reached nearly US$10 per 64kg bag.

Jacob has received free farming inputs, such as organic fertilizer, and free services, including pruning trees.

He has diversified his income streams, planted timber trees, and bought a herd of goats. He has grown a surplus of bananas and sold them on the local market.

All of his children – six sons – have finished school.


ABOCFA & MIA, shaping the future


Jacob credits ABOCFA with supporting his cocoa livelihood. He is a proud founding member of the ABOCFA Organic & Fairtrade Cocoa Cooperative.

Now that MIA is paying 150% of the Fairtrade premium to ABOCFA to supply cocoa for Ghana Gold, Jacob will continue to earn this extra income for his farm and family.