In the past five years, cocoa areas have expanded in Central America. The public sector of all the countries has incorporated this sector as one of its agricultural and agroindustrial priorities. Cocoa has a high potential, being a perennial crop that plays an important role in adapting to and mitigating climate change when grown under agroforestry systems.
However, the Central American region still produces less than 1% of the supply worldwide. That explains why this sector and the governments are especially interested in entering into niche and diversified markets. It is not through its volumes, but through its superior quality that Central American cocoa may be more competitive.
Understand the challenges and opportunities of the cocoa sector through the voice of their protagonists.
In its first stage (until 2018), the project succeeded in facilitating the creation of a common vision for Central American cocoa, and with that a regional platform (SICACAO) was created and at the same time, the national cocoa platforms were consolidated.
In the next 4 years (from 2019 to 2022), the programme’s focus is on 2 areas:
Learn more about SICACAO in this video.
Now, the Knowledge Management project is in its exit phase, led by Rikolto, in strategic alliance with the Secretariat of the Central American Agricultural Council (SECAC) and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (COSUDE). The focus during the last two project years is double:
The national and regional platforms will continue to strategically influence the implementation of the Regional Cocoa Policy and Strategy, with the involvement of the Secretariat of the Central American Agricultural Council (SECAC).
Furthermore, a gender analysis will be carried out in the cocoa value chain at the regional level in order to understand the current situation and provide an action plan for gender and youth participation.
In December of 2021, the Ministers of Agriculture of Central America and the Dominican Republic approved the strategy for the region’s cocoa sector, which is aimed particularly at increasing youth participating and tackling climate change.
Rikolto and the Executive Secretariat of the Central American Agricultural Council (SECAC) coordinated the development of the strategy together with all stakeholders part of SICACAO.
"We support the efforts of the Central American governments and platforms in the cocoa sector to create new dynamics." Ninoska Hurtado, Regional project coordinator (El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala and Nicaragua.