Multi-agency cocoa platform for Latin America and the Caribbean “Cocoa 2030-2050”
Cocoa is one of the main commodities traded in the world for the production of food, beverages and other products. Latin America and Caribbean (LAC) countries have a long history or cacao production linked to millions of farmers and is key to food security. LAC's ability to supply the fine cocoa market is unquestionable, however, the high concentrations of cadmium (Cd) in cocoa beans has become a limiting factor for development and sustainability.
This aspect worries cocoa producing countries in Latin America due to the contamination of some cocoa soils by this metal. In other words, mitigation plans are necessary at the regional level to reduce Cd contamination in cocoa production. It is also important to understand the possible socioeconomic effects of this problem on small-scale farmers.
This cooperation aims to develop technologies and proposals for state regulations that allow positioning the multi-agency platform at the regional level and improve the institutional capacities of each of the member countries, taking advantage of the knowledge generated by the platform and the collaborative work of the multidisciplinary teams from each partner country. The project pays attention to BID programs and policies, reducing gaps between countries, and promoting access to pollutant-free fine cocoa markets.
The technological solution
- Solution 1: Laboratory methodology for the identification of cadmium that includes an Analytical and Quality Control (QA/QC).
Standardized methodology (including a QA/QC protocol) for the determination of cadmium concentration, to be used in laboratories of the member countries of the consortium and the region. This tool will strengthen the negotiation capacities of the cocoa producing countries of the region.
- Solution 2: Spatial Distribution of cadmium (maps) in the three countries
Detailed graphic information of the areas with the presence of cadmium, that will serve the decision makers for the implementation of policies. In addition, this technological solution underlies a methodology for preparing these maps, which will be used for other countries that require it.
- Solution 3: Cadmium mitigation strategies in the field.
Superior genetic material of cocoa, recommendations for fertilization management and phytosanitary control that will be used for producers to obtain fine, special cocoa, with quality and safety.
The project will generate knowledge for the management of Cd in cocoa that will allow the concentration of cadmium levels to decrease by at least 30%. The methodology for determining Cd will be standardized, which would serve as a reference for at least 50% of the laboratories in the region. In addition, cadmium contamination maps will be generated in the three participating countries, and field and post-harvest mitigation techniques will be validated.
A socio-economic analysis of the incidence of the regulations of the European Union will be carried out, which will obtain information on the impact of the regulations in the region, with emphasis on small-scale farmers.
In this project they will carry out workshops, training courses and will have a virtual space to communicate the progress. With this, it will reach at least 30 trainers from the project institutions and will have a digital repository for cocoa.
By the end, this platform will have been consolidated as a technical instrument for advising and regional defense before international organizations. To guarantee its sustainability, it will continue to manage resources to face the new challenges of 2050.
The project will have direct influence on extension technicians from the three participating countries, so at least 30 technicians from different institutions will have the knowledge of the new technologies, which in turn will be the ones that spread in their countries.
In addition, based on the management of direct beneficiaries and the dissemination of knowledge through mass media, it is considered that at least 50,000 families, whose farms are affected by the incidence of cadmium, will have better productive conditions.
Sustainable Development Goals
- Escuela Politécnica del Litoral (ESPOL) - Ecuador
- Corporación Colombiana de Investigación Agropecuaria (AGROSAVIA) - Colombia
- Fundación para el Fomento y Promoción de la Investigación y Transferencia de Tecnología Agropecuaria (FITTACORI) - Costa Rica
- Centro Agronómico Tropical de Investigación y Enseñanza (CATIE) - Costa Rica
- CEFA - Italia
- International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) - Colombia
- GIZ - Alemania
- Instituto Dominicano de Investigaciones Agropecuarias y Forestales (IDIAF) - República Dominicana
- Instituto de Innovación Agropecuaria de Panamá (IDIAP) - Panamá
- Instituto Nacional de Innovación Agraria (INIA) - Perú
- Instituto Nacional de Investigaciones Agropecuarias (INIAP) - Ecuador
- Instituto Nacional de Innovación y Transferencia en Tecnología Agropecuaria (INTA) - Costa Rica
- RIKOLTO - Bélgica
- Fine Chocolate Industry Association (FCIA) - Estados Unidos
- Universidad Nacional de Costa Rica (UNA) - Costa Rica