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EditPhoto Title:Producing high-quality native cacao in Mexico
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EditImage Description:Farmer holding healthy cocoa plant that has been organically raised.
EditPhoto Credit:© Jessica Scranton
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Chocolate, made from cacao seeds, originated in Mexico, but the country has lost nearly half of its cacao production during the last decade, resulting in deforestation across Tabasco and Chiapas — and the loss of valuable traditional knowledge of many communities.



Our role

Mexico is known for being the first place to use cacao for human enjoyment. The beans were used to make drinks, as religious offerings, and even as a form of currency. But today, 70% of the cacao consumed in the country is imported. CI is working to recover the productivity of native cacao in Mexico — and at the same time protect 60,000 hectares of forests where the beans are produced and which support the livelihood of more than 46,000 small-scale producers.


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    EditItem Title:Create awareness
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    EditItem Text:In order to create awareness about the cultural and natural heritage around cacao in Mexico, we are nominating the cultural expressions of cacao production in Mexico as an intangible World Heritage Site with UNESCO. In addition, a social media pride campaign will feature chefs, chocolatiers and celebrities to increase the knowledge about the use and consumption of high-quality native cacao in Mexico.
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    EditItem Title:Increase sustainable production
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    EditItem Text:We are helping develop a production model that focuses on high quality cacao that is already adapted to local climate conditions. At the same time, we’re building local capacity in nurseries that produce cacao and have the right proportion of shade trees, diversification, increased resilience and improved the management of monilia, a cacao fungus.
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    EditImage:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_44405055.jpg
    EditImage Alt Text:Urban sprawl from Mexico City towards the Water Forest.
    EditTitle:Results
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    From 2008 to 2013,

    • 600 hectares of forest have been restored,
    • 300 coffee producers have been engaged
    • and 29,000 tonnes of CO2 have been captured

    benefiting 23 coffee communities and impacting the lives of more than 200 families in the region.

    EditPhoto Credit:© Jürgen Hoth
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      More of Our Work Links

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      Images Rows

      First Image

      EditTitle:Climate
      EditImage:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_30785027.jpg
      EditLink:/what/Pages/Climate.aspx
      EditImage Alt Text:Night falls over Rio de Janeiro. © Nikada
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      EditTitle:Science and Innovation
      EditImage:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_80568511.tif
      EditLink:/how/pages/science-and-innovation.aspx
      EditImage Alt Text:Scientists set a camera trap. © Benjamin Drummond
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      EditTitle:The Ocean
      EditImage:/SiteCollectionImages/ci_16084886.jpg
      EditLink:/what/Pages/oceans.aspx
      EditImage Alt Text:Coral reef in Viti Levu, Fiji, Oceania. © William Crosse
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