London, 11 May 2016–About 1,000 participants from 60 countries are expected at the third edition of the World Cocoa Conference, scheduled to take place from Sunday, 22 May to Wednesday 25 May at the Barceló Bávaro Convention Center in Bávaro, Dominican Republic.
The Conference, which will be accompanied by an adjacent Exhibition, will include 24 panel sessions and about 140 moderators, presenters and panellists looking at all of the most important issues in cocoa and chocolate. Included among the many topics will be tracks on the future of cocoa production, advances in markets and trading, and strengthening sustainability in the sector.
To be opened in the presence of His Excellency Mr. Danilo Medina Sánchez, President of the Dominican Republic, the Conference will also include remarks by government ministers from five countries, keynote presentations from some of the largest chocolate manufacturers and cocoa processors in the world, and discussions with some of the top experts in the entire cocoa and chocolate value chain.
Crucial to that value chain are the cocoa farmers, who will be the main focus of a special day-long Producers’ Forum on 22 May, and farmers from all of the world’s major producing countries are already set to take part in all aspects of the Conference.
The increasingly significant role of women in the cocoa industry is also to be highlighted by a special networking function organized with partner NGO Solidaridad on 23 May, and another side event, in conjunction with the organization Direct Cacao, aims to share knowledge and increase business for high quality cocoa and chocolate at a forum dedicated to the highly valued fine and flavour cocoa (on 26 May).
Just announced for Conference attendees is another highlight, an in-depth seminar on the role and functioning of the cocoa futures markets, from an experienced and expert viewpoint.
The wide-ranging event will serve as the gathering place for the whole world’s cocoa and chocolate sector during the final week in May, as the Conference immediately precedes the International Cocoa Council’s meeting of Member countries of the ICCO.
The bi-annual Conference, to be held for the first time in the Western Hemisphere, is taking place with the generous assistance of the Government of the Dominican Republic and the Comisión Nacional del Cacao.
For updated information on the Third World Cocoa Conference, including the latest programme and details of how to attend, please visit the event website www.worldcocoaconference.org.
Regular updates, with news and the latest images from the Conference, will be available on the ICCO’s Twitter channel, using the hashtag #worldcocoaconference16.