Cacao Forest in the Dominican Republic
With more than 80% of its organic cocoa surfaces in 2011, the Dominican Republic is the world's largest exporter of certified organic cocoa.
In rural areas, cocoa farming is the main economic activity and allows many Dominican families to live.
Launched in the Dominican Republic in 2015, the Cacao Forest program aims to create innovative farming models that will preserve the diversity and quality of cocoa production and improve the living conditions of producers while protecting the environment.
Cacao Forest aims to generate innovations for sustainable cocoa farming in the Dominican Republic through an alliance between local and international partners.
Funded by Valrhona, a preliminary study was conducted by CIRAD between October 2014 and March 2015. This diagnosis focused on production, plant biodiversity and local uses of these products in the provinces of Duarte and El Seibo. In fact, these regions account for 75% of producers and 74% of cocoa cultivated areas in the country (Ministerio de agricultura, 2006).
This information was then supplemented by Cacao Forest with a market study and a rural dynamics diagnosis, both conducted between April and September 2016 under the supervision of TFT in the same provinces and that of San Cristobal (10% of producers and surfaces cultured).
Studies conducted by CIRAD (2015) and TFT (2016) are based on literature reviews, surveys of producers and their families, botanical inventories and agronomic measures in cocoa farms, interviews with key stakeholders and participatory games.