Tropentag, September 19 - 21, 2016 in Vienna, Austria
"Solidarity in a competing world - fair use of resources"
Socio-Economic Study of an Implemented Agroforestry Project with Small Scale Cocoa Producers in Honduras
Karent Kupferschmied1, Ingrid Fromm1, Arthur Rouanet2
1Bern University of Applied Sciences, School of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences, Switzerland
2Pur Projet, France
Cocoa cultivation has a long tradition in Honduras. The general knowledge about cocoa, the genetic traits of Honduran cocoa, and the particular environmental conditions of the country has been driving the interest of several organisations and countries to encourage sustainable cocoa production. In October 2014, the Honduran Foundation for Agricultural Research (FHIA) reported 2100 ha of cocoa planted nationwide. The average production area per household is less than 2 ha, at over 200 m asl and under agroforestry systems.
Patuca National Park located in Olancho region is the second biggest protected natural area; nevertheless, it shows the highest deforestation rate in the country. Seeking for environmental and economic alternatives, Helvetas Swiss Intercooperation has strengthened since 2009 the Honduran Association of Organic Cocoa Producers from Olancho (APROSACAO) with private investment from Chocolats Halba Coop Group and the support of PurProjet, an NGO working with them since 2012. The reforestation programme was initiated in order to increase carbon sequestration and ensure the future producers' revenues through the marketing of legal wood.
The main goal of this study was to identify the socio economic impact of the agroforestry programme APROSACAO/PurProjet among cocoa producers. For the purpose of the study, data from 55 producers living in 5 villages in Olancho was collected. The results indicated that there is no direct effect in the income or cocoa yield improvement. Nonetheless, cocoa producers report more income than expenses. In addition, there is a positive influence of the agroforestry programme on food security and cocoa producers' contribution to the environment and future generations. The recommendations from this study are to strengthen trainings towards climate change and women empowerment in the cocoa value chain. Equally, there should be more effort to promote interventions that generate investment capital and sustainable strategies that aim at the future needs of the producers.
Keywords: Agroforestry systems, Honduras, organic cocoa, reforestation program
Contact Address: Karent Kupferschmied, Bern University of Applied Sciences, School of Agricultural, Forest and Food Sciences, Laenggasse 85, 3052 Zollikofen, Switzerland, e-mail: kpbermudezvgmail.com