CAC Pangoa has been a close partner of Rikolto since 2011 and a pioneer in including women and youth in the country's cocoa and coffee sector. The cooperative’s principal business used to be coffee, but as a result of the coffee rust crisis and with the purpose of diversifying risk, it has chosen to develop strategies focused on expanding and developing its fine flavour cocoa business, which is specific to the region.
The cooperative established itself at a national level because of its model which strikes a balance between business profitability and social needs to improve the life quality of its members, i.e. the producers. Since 2010, its leader training centre has trained staff to increase the participation of women and youth and support the cooperative’s management staff throughout their careers. The field innovation process is geared principally to the development of sustainable cocoa production through agroforestry systems, supplementing cocoa with food crops, native fruit and lumber, and secondly, developing data systems that improve the cooperative’s management and decision making.
Rikolto wants to enhance both the professionalism of the fine flavour cocoa producers and the quality of the cocoa they produce so that it can be used by fine chocolate makers. We do this by working closely with rural youth, fostering inclusive commercial links with cocoa buyers, and by working together with strategic partners in order to have greater clout in the Peruvian cocoa sector.
1. Professionalising farmer organisations
- We strengthen the socio-entrepreneurial capacities of CAC Pangoa: we measure them by using the SCOPE tool and jointly develop an action plan to improve weaker-scoring business areas.
- We support close collaboration between CAC Pangoa and Biodiversity International with the purpose of developing a clonal garden of cocoa heritage trees destined for the fine flavour cocoa market through agroforestry practices. Thanks to this project, APPCACAO will be able to share these practices with 26 other cocoa producer organisations.
- We support the Women Development Committee (Spanish acronym CODEMU) and the leader training centre, as well as training for partner organisations. The goal is to improve their management performance and strengthen succession planning in order to ensure the social and commercial sustainability of the cooperative.
2. Improving the quality of fine flavour cocoa
- Together with the APPCACAO and SINEACE programmes supported by the Ministry of Education, we have launched a certification programme for skills required by young people employed in cocoa quality control.
- We improve the cocoa tasting capacity and quality management skills of technicians and field staff of the 26 member organisations of APPCACAO.
- We support the development of a database of fine flavour cocoa varieties.
3. Promoting inclusive commercial relationships
- We promote inclusive commercial relationships between CAC Pangoa and its clients, so as to have a more efficient and sustainable social and environmental impact over time. The lessons learned from these experiences can help us create a platform from which to build bridges between farming organisations and private actors.
- We encourage rural youth to establish cocoa sector start-ups in order to stimulate learning through the development of apprenticeships and events.
4. Creating impact
- We bring more dynamism into multi-actor cocoa platforms, by focusing on the professionalisation of producer organisations, the development of sustainable and inclusive business models, quality and data management, and the inclusion of women and youth. The goal is to gather information and lay the groundwork for the elaboration of a National Plan for Cocoa and Chocolate Development with the participation of key players from the public and private sectors, including civil society and academia.