MILAN – Following its autumn session, the International Coffee Organization (ICO) has recently issued an official communiqué highlighting the main decisions taken during the meetings. The document stresses the importance of the new International Coffee Agreement (ICA 2022), which involves the private sector in the debate around the key issues that will shape the future of the coffee sector. Here is the communiqué.
LONDON – The International Coffee Organization (ICO) convened the 134th session of the International Coffee Council, gathering its Members to discuss and agree on wide-ranging issues impacting the coffee sector.
The session was marked by the opening for signature of the new International Coffee Agreement 2022 (ICA 2022). While its governmental nature has remained unchanged, the agreement’s new mandate will integrate private sector and civil society participation, enabling coffee public and private decision-makers, stakeholders and farmers to align their views and decide on joint actions that will achieve a more sustainable and prosperous sector.
Eight countries have now signed the ICA 2022, namely Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Togo and Venezuela, and several other countries shared updates on the status of their procedures for signature.
Among other major issues pertaining to the 134th session agenda, ICO Members endorsed the 4th CEO and Global Leaders Forum Communiqué, signed by members of the Coffee Public-Private Task Force who pledged to align their coffee sustainability goals with the 2030 Roadmap.
The International Coffee Council also approved the outcomes of the Forum, where participants representing coffee exporting and importing countries, traders, roasters, retailers, producer networks and NGOs stressed the importance of taking responsibility and action in times of massive disruptive change to ensure the sector’s future for generations of producers and consumers.
With regard to the Statistics department, ICO Members approved a revised procedure for the release of Certificates of Origin, eliminating one of two steps in the current stamp process and streamlining proceedings for Certifying Agencies.
The Council also agreed on a three-step standard operating procedure to resolve critical size discrepancies between data provided by Members and other official data from the country concerned or international sources by involving an independent third party from the UN system or another recognized statistical authority in the arbitration process.
The dates of the 5th World Coffee Conference in Bangalore, India, were also confirmed, with the event due to take place from 12 to 14 July 2022 as part of a week of meetings that will include the 136th Session of the ICC, the 5th CEO and Global Leaders Forum and the celebration of the ICO’s 60th anniversary.
Again, with reference to upcoming meetings of the ICO, the delegation of El Salvador expressed their interest in hosting a future session of the Council in their country. This announcement was welcomed with enthusiasm by Members and will be further discussed at subsequent sessions of the Council.
Finally, Members elected Mr Massimiliano Fabian of the European Union (Italy) and Dr Enselme Gouthon of Togo as a Chair and Vice-Chair of the International Coffee Council for coffee year 2022/23, respectively. Mr Fabian is President of Demus S.p.A. and serves, among other functions, as Vice-president of the European Coffee Federation and of the Trieste Coffee Association in Italy.
Meanwhile, Dr Gouthon has served as Representative of Togo within various international cocoa and coffee organizations and was Secretary General of the Coordination Committee of the Coffee and Cocoa Sectors (CCFCC) in Togo for more than 25 years.
The closing session of the Council was dedicated to Ambassador Iván Romero Martínez of Honduras in recognition of his contribution to the work of the ICO as a unique diplomacy space to address the challenges of the coffee sector worldwide.
The Executive Director and several Heads of Delegation expressed their gratitude to Ambassador Romero for the major role he has played in the sustainable development of the sector and in negotiations for the approval of the ICA 2022.