Oliver Von Hagen, who is responsible for leading the projects, said “Problems in the cocoa supply chain have been clearly identified, but the solutions to these problems are not so evident.
“Low productivity on cocoa farms is a result of poor agricultural practices, nutrient-depleted soil and ageing cocoa trees. This means that farmers exist in a state of poverty and are unable to invest in their farms.
“With our pilot projects we want to accelerate impact, we want to test innovative approaches, and learn if the new approaches we are planning are effective. Critically, we want to evaluate if these approaches are scalable, replicable and self-sustaining.
“We are partnering with Wageningen University which is providing us with robust, scientific support to provide the baseline and analytical framework against which we can assess the outcomes.”
The pilot projects will be in Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Cameroon, Indonesia and Brazil. The first one started on 28 February in Indonesia with pilot projects in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, followed by Cameroon and Brazil to come.