Chocolate and Sustainable Cocoa Farming
Chocolate consumers and environmental and social activists are increasingly less inclined to accept a situation where cocoa and chocolate production exploits rainforests and smallholder farmers in the tropics. With the exhaustion of forest resources for growing cocoa cheaply, the handful of multinational food conglomerates that now dominate chocolate manufacturing are becoming concerned about a sustainable supply of cocoa beans and are becoming involved in efforts to assist farmers and ensure a stable supply chain. Organisations are being developed to certify that cocoa production is environmentally and socially acceptable. This book introduces the biology of cocoa, and the history of cocoa domestication, planting and chocolate manufacture. It describes how cocoa can be grown with other useful species in an environmentally sound way to increase production on existing farms, to reduce incursion into forests, restore biodiversity, and empower and improve the livelihoods of the six million farming families in the tropics who depend on it.
Peter McMahon studied biology at the University of Sussex and completed a Ph.D. at La Trobe University in Australia. As a Research Fellow there and later at the University of Sydney, he coordinated Australian-funded research in Indonesia on resistance of cocoa genotypes to pests and diseases and inter-disciplinary approaches to improving cocoa farmer livelihoods. He has co-authored book chapters and papers on participatory testing of cocoa genotypes, soil nutrition, one health and integrated pest and disease management.
Philip Keane completed a PhD in Papua New Guinea on the cause of vascular streak dieback of cocoa, taught agriculture and botany at the University of Papua New Guinea, and then at La Trobe University, Australia, for 40 years, during which he undertook projects and consultancies on pests and diseases of cocoa and agricultural development in Indonesia, Papua New Guinea and Costa Rica. He edited an FAO book on Cocoa Pest and Disease Management in Southeast Asia and a Cocoa Extension Manual for the Papua New Guinea Cocoa Coconut Institute.
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