The first of a series of cocoa-related meetings overseen by the World Cocoa Foundation (WCF) took place recently in San Salvador.
The purpose of the meetings was to raise Latin American awareness about issues related to fine flavor cocoa, quality and plant genetics.
The meetings were the first of their kind in El Salvador. Scientists, industry experts, government representatives and non-governmental organizations from the region discussed the market outlook, opportunities for further developing this segment of the market, the latest research and the role of capacity building.
Later in the week, researchers from public and private institutions in the region will meet to talk about strategies for adapting cocoa production to climate change and addressing disease pressures.
“Fine flavor, quality and genetics are important and interlinked issues the cocoa and chocolate industry is facing,” WCF President Bill Guyton said. “We’re pleased to bring people together in El Salvador to collaborate on these important topics.”
The meetings were opened by El Salvador’s Minister of Agriculture, Orestes Fredesman Ortez Andrade, and featured speakers from cocoa companies Casa Luker, Ecom and Guittard.
“Today, at this great event promoted by the WCF, we want to show how CasaLuker is adding value to the cocoa knowledge chain - agricultural and scientific – making it clear that this step will be very helpful for improving our sustainable and profitable model to our farmers keeping qualities of aroma and flavor in our products,” Francisco Gomez, international business manager at sponsor company Casa Luker and a member of WCF’s board of directors, said.
WCF's programs benefit farmers and their communities in cocoa-growing regions of Africa, Southeast Asia, and the Americas. For more information, visit www.worldcocoafoundation.org.
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