Cocoa prices have seen a modest rally the last couple weeks, primarily due to increased Asian demand, and concerns about the crop situation in Ghana.
While soil moisture conditions are ideal in west Africa, a developing dry, hot pattern has developed the last few weeks. Will it continue? Subscribers to my new weather commodity service will receive more specific information by this spring, once it begins this spring. But for now, you can register here for some free info.
Wo what is the Harmattan Wind? It is an occasional dry, strong Northeast wind that can limit visibility and block the sun for several days. It cost airlines millions of dollars in Africa every year or two. Humidity can drop as low as 10-15% and can cause stress to humans and damage crops, such as cocoa in Ivory Coast, Ghana or Nigeria
Based on what I believe is a weak, lingering El Nino signal and other teleconnections such as cold block over Greenland, responsible for the warm US winter, the Harmattan wind will be the strongest of the season later this week; especially for Ghana.
We can see humidity as low as 7% in Ghana later this week. This could begin to cause some concerns with a portion of the west African cocoa crop.
However, will it really cause any major, long term disruption in cocoa supplies? After all, soil moisture is plentiful in west Africa from a record west fall. The answer will depend on various teleconnections and studies I have completed.
For a special more detailed report about the Harmattan, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I would be happy to send it to you. Presently, only major premium clients receive frequent updates to such reports and more detailed analysis.