Topics Archives: Indonesia

Cocoa Academy: Indonesia’s Cocoa Doctor Robin

Cocoa Doctor Robin Chart 110713

Robin is one of the first cocoa doctors to graduate from the Cocoa Academy. In 2010, when he brought back the grafting technique to Mayoa village, it was still a very new concept to most of the cocoa farmers. With a 95% guaranteed survival rate and the pioneer advantage of setting a relatively higher price (budwood at $0.3 USD each, grafting service at $

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Usman Siraje: Curiosity Leads to Prosperity

Usman pic 2

This post is co-authored by Akhmad Anshari

Usman Siraje is very different from other cocoa farmers we’ve met in Indonesia.

In 1970, Usman started his first business, a clothes workshop, which supported his family until 1984. After 14 years, as the business went bad, Usman closed the workshop and bought 3Ha land at Buntu Batu Village in Luwu District, and started his new career

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Interview with Smilja Lambert: Unstoppable Passion for Cocoa

Smilja photo 07-10-13

Smilja Lambert is the Cocoa Sustainability Research Manager for the Asia Pacific region. She is responsible for the Mars cocoa sustainability research projects in this region, focusing mainly in Indonesia, Vietnam, Papua New Guinea and Philippines.

I got a chance to travel with Smilja in early April, and she is probably the idea travel companion you could ever imagine: with thousands of stories, great

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Cocoa Doctor Andi Asri: Helping Others Also Makes Me Succeed

Cocoa Doctor Andi Asri 3 v.4

Andi Asri is a cocoa doctor in Awo Village, south Sulawesi, Indonesia. The first time I met Andi was in Dec 2012 at the first “Best Cocoa Village Center Competition” in CDC Tarengge. Compared with other cocoa doctors, who were quite nervous talking to the audience, Andi’s interactive and relaxed way of presenting his CVC impressed all of us.

As we were preparing for

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Mars Chocolate Held Cocoa Agri-business Contest at Vocational Schools in Sulawesi

The 3 winning teams at the final competition

Cocoa has been the main income source for over half a million smallholders in Sulawesi, Indonesia. With the increasing need for cocoa worldwide, opportunities and challenges are facing the industry. Aimed at improving cocoa farmers’ lives as well as cultivating the next generation’s interests in cocoa, Mars Chocolate recently held a Cocoa Agri-business contest at vocational schools in Luwu, North Luwu and East Luwu,

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Woman Cocoa Farmer Empowered From Industry Collaboration

astuti_1

In the farmers’ eyes, a beautiful cocoa tree is the one with high yield. The lady in the picture who is happily harvesting her beautiful cocoa tree, her name is Astuty. With over 13-year experience of growing cacao, she carefully takes care of her cocoa farm of 2 hectors. But back to 3 years ago, those cocoa trees caused her sleepless nights.

3 years

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Indonesia: A chance for chocolate

Since 2011, Mars Chocolate has partnered with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), a specialized agency of the United Nations, and the government of Indonesia to develop the Cocoa Development Center model in Sulawesi.  IFAD has recently developed a video on our efforts here, and they’ve released a special version just in time for Easter.

In the IFAD video, you’ll meet Ahmad Darise,

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Mars exports first certified sustainable cocoa butter and powder from Sulawesi

Makassar opening photo

A few weeks ago, we celebrated the start of export shipments of certified sustainable cocoa butter and cocoa powder from our cocoa bean processing factory in Makassar, South Sulawesi in Indonesia.

It marks a new phase of our sustainability efforts in that country.  In addition to expanding our cocoa grinding factory and doubling the size of our office in Makassar, we are also investing

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Regional Cocoa Breeders Group Makes Progress

Regional Cocoa Breeders Group in Malaysia, November 2011

The Regional Cocoa Breeders Group is a collaboration of regional Asia/Pacific cocoa breeders in Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam, Papua New Guinea and India.  The group meets to address improving planting materials for cocoa farmers. A majority of collaborators are the national cocoa research institutes or universities responsible for cocoa research in each region.

The Regional Cocoa Breeders Group first met in Singapore in 2004,

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World Cocoa Foundation Partners Meeting in San Francisco

The last two days brought together a huge range of government officials, private companies and civil society groups for the biannual partners meeting of the World Cocoa Foundation in San Francisco.  This meeting focused on emerging cocoa origins, and Asia was a focus for many attendees.  Particularly interesting was a presentation by Swisscontact’s Manfred Boer on their 21 month, $7 million dollar PEKA Project

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