November 12, 2018 / 1:56 PM / in a month

Sunny spells help Ivory Coast's main cocoa crop

ABIDJAN (Reuters) - Sunny spells in most of Ivory Coast last week were expected to boost the main cocoa crop in the world’s top producer, farmers said on Monday.

A farmer is seen at his cocoa plantation in Toumodi, Ivory Coast October 13, 2018. REUTERS/Thierry Gouegnon

A drop in rainfall at the beginning of the November to February dry season has lessened the threat of black pod disease, farmers said, though some light rain has maintained a good level of soil moisture.

“With some rain every week, we think the trees won’t suffer from the dry season and the quality will be good by the end of the main crop season,” Arsène Yobouet, who farms in the western region of Soubre.

Rainfall in Soubre was 15.3 mm last week, 2.9 mm below the five-year average, according to data collected by Reuters.

Rainfall in Divo region was 15.6 millimeters (mm), 1.3 mm below the five-year average.

“The weather will help the season last and there will be less diseases on the trees,” said Albert N’Zue, who farms in Daloa, where rainfall was 11.9 mm, 2.5 mm above the five-year average.

Rainfall in eastern of Abengourou was 24.6 mm, 5.1 mm above the five-year average.

Rainfall in southern region of Agboville was 18.6 mm, 1.7 mm below the five-year average.

Rainfall in the central regions of Bongouanou was at 18 mm, 8 mm above average. Rainfall in the central region of Yamoussoukro was at 27.9 mm, 18.2 mm above average.

In the western Man region, rainfall was 8.1 mm, 1.5 mm below average.

Average temperatures in the cocoa-growing regions ranged from 26.38 to 28.57 degrees Celsius.

Reporting by Loucoumane Coulibaly; Editing by Juliette Jabkhiro and Louise Heavens

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