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The achievements of Cocoa Forest 1st semester 2022

7 June 2022
This beginning of the year was rich in achievements for the Cocoa Forest project. Between strengthening the team on the ground and new plantations, the project has consolidated its commitments and achieved its objectives.

Review of Last Year 

The 3rd meeting of the local monitoring committee of the Cocoa Forest project in the Dominican Republic took place on 22 February. It was moderated by Sébastian Cardenas, the general coordinator of the project, and Olivier Deheuvels, the scientific coordinator. The objective of the day was to bring together the Dominican partners, evaluate the results of the 2021 actions, present the 2022 action plan and organize the workshops. 

It was a day rich in exchanges and sharing. It was aimed at supporting the work which started 6 years ago and ensuring its continuation: together with the major players of the Dominican cocoa sector, to undertake a transformation of the Dominican cocoa production, making it as sustainable as possible. 

Find out more: 3rd Meeting of the Local Monitoring Committee of the Cocoa Forest project in the Dominican Republic. - Cocoa Forest

New recruits 

The beginning of the year was also marked by the recruitment of 2 new members of the Cocao Forest team in the Dominican Republic. Jaimelissa Santana replaced Ana Montero and she joined the marketing team to develop the business strategy for cocoa related products. As for Jorge, he is the new head of communication in the Dominican Republic. 

Learn more: Welcome to Jaimelissa and Jorge! - Cocoa Forest

Cocoa Forest has replanted 

As anticipated by Cocoa Forest and the REP monitoring protocol, the plantations of the Dominican farmers were severely affected by disease and mortality. The systematic replanting of the affected plantations was therefore envisaged by Cacao Forest. For this reason between December 2021 and February 2022, we worked to produce and replace the cocoa seedlings which were grafted into the REP plots of our Dominican producers. In total, on each of the 36 plots, more than 4500 seedlings were planted. 

Learn more: Cocoa Forest replant! - Cocoa Forest

A new product in the plantations 

The project's EF team offered a number of REP producers the chance to introduce a new product with high added value: the Hibiscus flower. 23 farmers, including 4 belonging to REP,  carried out tests to grow flowering hibiscus plants with convincing results. 

This new product could increase producers' incomes. The Hibiscus flower is becoming increasingly well-known and appreciated by the general public. It can be used to prepare a variety of drinks or culinary recipes and should easily find its market, especially internationally.

Learn more: A new product with high added value: the Hibiscus flower. - Cocoa Forest

More and more training programmes 

Finally, at the beginning of the year, Cacao Forest continued training local producers and has already organized many workshops. The entire Cocoa Forest team has mobilized to train local players: whether for the processing of crops associated with cocoa plants (annatto, ginger and turmeric), the drying and use of Hibiscus flowers or the grafting of cocoa plants. 

See the articles: The grafting of cocoa plants: what is the aim? - Cocoa Forest & How to add value to annatto, ginger and turmeric, 3 products from Cocoa Forest's agroforestry models? - Cocoa Forest

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