Ivory Coast’s Palm Oil Exports Grow 20% Annually


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Côte d’Ivoire’s Palm Oil production in MY2022/23 is to reach 650,000MT, according to the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service Abidjan (Post). The projected increase in MY2022/23 is due to new official data that includes new plantations set up by smallholder farmers. Smallholder production represents up to 60 percent of the total output in Côte d’Ivoire. Overall production of fresh fruit bunches (FFB) is about 2.2 MMT. Post projected Côte d’Ivoire’s Palm Oil production in MY2021/22 at 620,000MT. 

The high prices for fertilizers may have resulted in a drop in production. However, Post estimates that the significant rise in the price for fresh fruit bunches (FFB) should incentivize smallholder farmers to continue purchasing fertilizers and pesticides for their plantations. In fact, since January 2022, FFB prices have remained the highest they have ever been for over ten years. The price for FFB has doubled over the last two years (from $0.06 to $0.12 per kg), primarily due to the rise in Palm Oil demand on the international market and the local authority’s (Conseil Hevea et Palmier à Huile) willingness to regulate the local price of raw material.

Five significant companies own all the industrial Palm Oil plantations in the country, with PALMCI (owned by SIFCA Group) being the biggest. Other industrial productions include Sipef-CI, Palmafrique, SOGB, and DekelOil. An additional 3,500 HA is owned by the National Agronomic Research Center (CNRA) for a total area of 75,000 HA. Industrial Palm Oil plantations contribute 40 percent of national Oil production. The average yield for industrial farms is 14t/HA, while smallholder farms’ yield barely reaches 6t/HA.

Palm Oil processing in Côte d’Ivoire is done by 16 large Oil mills and several small and medium-sized Oil mills. These processing facilities can process 800 tons of FFB per hour. Additionally, artisanal processors play a significant role in producing Oil and soap for local communities. However, processing data for these facilities remains largely unknown.

MY2022/23 Palm Oil consumption is forecast at 375,000MT. This is primarily due to the high national demand for Palm Oil for food and the cosmetic industry. Post estimated MY2021/22 Palm Oil consumption at 371,000MT, a 40 percent increase from the USDA estimate for the same period. Palm Oil is consumed primarily in the industrial sector, accounting for about 64 percent of total consumption and local domestic food usage (36 percent).

In the industrial sector, industries process and include crude Palm Oil in their products. Some industries are focused on making food (vegetable Oil, margarine, biscuits, etc.), while others make cosmetics and soap. The biggest names in the industry include Awi, Adamafrique, Adamafrique, Sania, Sarci, and Sifca. Post expects a slight increase in Palm Oil consumption for food over the next two years due to population growth.

Palm Oil Trade in Ivory Coast

Côte d’Ivoire’s Palm Oil exports are estimated at 320,000MT for MY2022/23. Exported Palm Oil products to overseas countries are shipped from the Port of Abidjan and Port of San Pedro. The main products exported are Crude Palm Oil (CPO) and, at a marginal amount, Kernel Palm Oil (KPO). According to export data, Mali is the primary destination for CPO exports accounting for 20 percent of total exports (2021). Post estimated that Cote d’Ivoire’s Palm Oil exports for MY2021/22 will be 300,000MT.

Burkina Faso has been the second-largest destination for CPO exports over the last five years, followed by Ghana, Niger, Senegal, Spain, and the Netherlands. India and Cameroon have also recently started to import Ivoirian Palm Oil since MY2021. Exports have increased over the last five years at an average of 20 percent annually.

Other sources: USDA

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