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AGRI 2023

Kouadio Venance Paques Gniayou

Kouadio Venance Paques Gniayou, Speaker at Agriculture conference
Felix Houphouet Boigny University, Cote d'Ivoire
Title : Cocoa based-agroforestry systems and food security in developing countries: Case of Cote d’Ivoire


Like most developing countries, Côte d'Ivoire is a country with a strong agricultural vocation. As the world's leading cocoa producer, it has long practiced extensive cultivation, which has profoundly degraded its forest cover. However, in certain regions of the country, such as the center, producers have adopted cocoa farming in agroforests for several generations. In order to better appreciate the viability of these systems, this study took the opportunity to determine the role of these agroforestry systems in the lives of households in the sub-prefecture of Kokumbo (Central Côte d'Ivoire). To do this, direct observations in the plantations and ethnobotanical and socioeconomic surveys were conducted among 102 producers and 268 women involved in the production and distribution of products from cocoa-based agrosystems. The analysis of the data collected from the women shows that 30% of them are owners of a cocoa farm. A total of 79 plant species associated with cocoa trees were identified in the women's plantations. The species strongly present are Musa paradisiaca, Persea americana, Citrus sinensis, Elaeis guineensis and Mangifera indica. These species associated with cocoa trees are used as shade for cocoa trees, for self-consumption, for sale, for pharmacopoeia, as biofertilizer, and as timber and fuelwood. The study shows that 12% of households surveyed are food insecure, of which 4% are severely food insecure and 8% are moderately food insecure. Less than 25% of the populations assessed were heavily engaged in coping, stress and crisis strategies at the time of this work. These results shed more light on the contribution of cocoa-based agroforestry systems to the survival of the local population and the level of food security. Analysis of the data collected in the men's plantations identified 45 tree species associated with cocoa trees and providing various provisioning services to producers, in addition to cocoa production. A total of 15 timber species were identified, including Antiaris toxicaria and Ceiba pentandra. These timbers, which can be cut and cut up when necessary, represent a financial potential for the producer. In addition to this timber function, 21 species produce fruits, leaves or seeds that are consumed and sold on local markets. This is the case for the kernels of Garcinia kola (petit cola), Ricinodendron heudelotii (Akpi) and Irvingia gabonensis, which have high economic values. The barks, leaves and fruits of at least 20 species are used to make traditional remedies that are sometimes commercialized (Alstonia boonei barks, Xylopia aethiopica fruits...). This work has also shown that the diversity of income sources increases with the complexity of the systems and contributes to the well-being of producers, hence the need to promote agroforestry in the current context of climate change and food security of vulnerable households.


What will audience learn from your presentation?

(Try to list 3-5 specific items)

  • Existence since several decades, of sustainable agroforestry models that still work today.
  • To better appreciate the role that agroforestry systems can play in the food security of vulnerable households.
  • Further research on sustainable models based on agroforestry systems to meet their food security needs.
  • Conduct research collaborations to enhance and optimize the productivity of these agroforestry systems.


Dr. Kouadio studied Plant Biodiversity at Félix Houphouët-Boigny University, Côte d’Ivoire and graduated a MS in 2015. He then joined the research group of Prof. Adou Yao Constant Yves at the Laboratory of Botany, UFR Biosciences. He received his PhD degree in 2019 at the same institution. Specialist of plant biodiversity in option Agroforestry, he worked as expert for several project such as those conducted by the World agroforestry Centre in the cocoa production area in Côte d’Ivoire. He has published more than 7 research articles in scientific journals.

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