In a political effort to make Laurent Gbagbo step down from power, the US State Department has endorsed a month long ban on cocoa exports from the Ivory Coast. The majority of cocoa grown in the Ivory Coast is produced by small farms with less than a few acres of land, but those small farms together produce about 40% of the world's supply of cocoa. This makes the Ivory Coast the world's largest cocoa exporter.
That large share of the cocoa market makes up roughly one third of the country's GDP. International powers are hoping that this will help put Alassane Ouattara, the candidate that the international community recognizes as the legitimate winner of last November's election, into office.