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Food and Agriculture

Director, Cocoa Farmer Income

World Cocoa Foundation (WCF) is seeking a highly experienced and motivated Director, Cocoa Farmer Income to spearhead collaborative programmes to enhance farmer livelihoods in the West African region. The successful candidate must demonstrate a track record of leading successful initiatives to increase farmer income. This role will provide strategic guidance, particularly within the Cocoa & Forests Initiative (CFI), collaborating closely with WCF's country teams and relevant directors.

The Role

The World Cocoa Foundation (WCF) is an international membership organization whose members span the entire global cocoa and chocolate sector, including farmer cooperatives, cocoa processors, chocolate manufacturers, supply chain companies and other companies worldwide.

WCF’s vision is to be a catalyst for a thriving and equitable cocoa sector where farmer income is improved, child labour is significantly reduced and deforestation is reversed.  WCF’s unique position at the centre of the cocoa and chocolate industry, governments, civil society and cocoa farming communities, enables WCF to realise its vision through the creation of strategic relationships and collaborative programmes that deliver real impact and systemic reform.

About the role

Poverty drives environmental degradation and deforestation in West Africa's cocoa-growing regions. Addressing poverty by boosting farmer income can combat these issues, including child labour. Leveraging insights from WCF's recent Cocoa Household and Income Study, the Director, Cocoa Farmer Income will spearhead collaborative programmes to enhance farmer livelihoods in the region.


The location for this role could be in Ghana or Cote d’Ivoire, the EU, UK or US with a preference for West Africa and will require travel within the region and to other geographies.

Key dimensions of the role

  • Create a space for farmer income in heavily regulated sectors such as cocoa in West Africa.
  • Convene member companies and government partners on household income relevant topics such as Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), agroforestry, economic trees, non-cocoa / off-farm income generation, supply management, sustainability premiums, incentive agreements and payment schemes that kick-start income generation activities, or the economic effects of plant diseases such as Cocoa Swollen Shoot Virus Disease (CSSVD) of black pod disease. Other topics might include post-harvest losses, reduction of on farm production costs, land tenure, social and gender related issues, etc.
  • Lead government, private sector and civil society partner engagement on the creation of enabling conditions that support wealth creation among cocoa farmers and rural households.
  • Support government engagement on illegal mining in connection with cocoa farming, on land tenure issues and law enforcement.
  • Lead communication of living income in the cocoa sector in close cooperation with Corporate Affairs.
  • Support the CFI team working with the governments to forge partnership on cocoa orchard safeguarding or restoration.
  • Lead an assessment and evaluation of existing approaches based on an income theory of change or logic model focussing on cocoa yield increase and farmer incomes.
  • Assess and evaluate non-cocoa on farm and off-farm interventions as well as enabling environment solutions that contribute to household incomes for cocoa farmers.
  • Build a pipeline of innovative and collaborative programmes that effectively address cocoa farmer household income.
  • Design and lead the development of winning proposals that deliver a strong collaborative programme on farmer income in close collaboration with WCF member, governmental and other stakeholders and donor communities.
  • Ensure the alignment and complementarity of farmer income interventions and results with related impacts on deforestation (with CFI) and child labour.
  • Close in-house collaboration with the country directors, the CFI director, the M&E Director and the Social Development Director to ensure alignment of all programmes.

Skills and experience

  • Minimum 10 years of full-time relevant professional experience in global in rural development, agriculture, with significant experience in programme development and delivery.
  • Advanced degree in relevant discipline preferred, including environmental sciences, forestry, agriculture, natural resource management, development economics, or related field.
  • Experience in agriculture development and experience in cocoa preferred.
  • Outstanding oral and written communications skills in French and English, with proficiency in local languages as a plus.
  • Experience managing and mentoring staff (currently no direct reports) and contributing to a leadership team in a matrixed organization; and collaborative spirit, with a strong commitment to teamwork with internal colleagues and external partners.
  • Proven experience in proposal development, budgeting and programme delivery.
  • A bias for precision, results, and continuous improvement.
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively in a fast-paced office environment, including adaptability to rapidly changing priorities and ability to manage multiple deadlines and deliver high quality work products.
  • Excellent networking, communication and influencing skills.
  • Proven ability to collaborate with diverse stakeholders, including government agencies, NGOs, and the private sector.
  • Resilience, conviction, and confidence balanced with flexibility, patience, and humility.
  • A balance of strategic, diplomatic skill and the ability to plan for, and then navigate multiple, sometimes divergent contingencies.
  • Passion for sustainability, social impact and improving farmer livelihoods.

Don’t meet every single requirement? Studies have shown that women and people of colour are less likely to apply for jobs unless they meet every single qualification. At Millar Cameron, we are dedicated to supporting our Clients in building and supporting diverse and inclusive workplaces and culture, so if you’re excited about this role but your past experience doesn’t align perfectly with every qualification in the job description, we encourage you to apply anyway. You may be just the right candidate for this or other roles.

Since 2007 Millar Cameron has specialised in sourcing leadership and keyperson talent across a number of industries, including agribusiness, international development, industrial, consumer, financial and professional services, private equity, and technology, media and telecommunications. Our mission and purpose is to positively contribute to the development of Africa, and other emerging markets, through the provision of people.

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