This CNN World Report looks at the cacao market in West Africa and Trinidad. An informative piece with a positive look into the future for these small holder farmers.
These examples further the discussion of the growing trend of consumers wishing to know more about from where and how the food they purchase has made its way to the supermarket shelves. See also the recent NYTimes.com article about the “find the farmer” scheme that is running in parts of the US. This could have huge IP implications in terms of branding and certification.
CAS-IP has been involved in a project run by Bioversity International and funded by the World Bank that uses modern genomics methods to enhance the cocoa value chain by identifying ”rare and potentially valuable high-quality [cacao] beans.. cacao growers could charge more for special beans, and chocolate lovers could enjoy better experiences.”
See the Bioversity International press release for more info.
“The core of the project is to develop standardized, reliable methods to identify the valuable beans… Jan Engels, the project leader, is a senior scientist at Bioversity International with long experience of cacao diversity. “I am very pleased with the Bank’s decision,” he said. “This will encourage farmers to conserve cacao diversity for the best possible reason: because it earns them more money.”
A win, win then?