Valorising cacao pulp to improve farmers’ income

Smallholder cacao farmers in Ecuador have troubles earning a living with selling their beans. To improve their income, the cacao pulp can be valorised by making use of locally deployed Dutch food processing technology. In this SMP the feasibility of the mobile processing units will be studied by a strong consortium of Dutch and Ecuadorian partners. This is a stepping stone towards deployment and upscaling of Dutch technology, therewith improving the lives of Ecuadorian cacao farmers.

The aim of the project is threefold: 1) to increase the income of smallholder farmers in rural areas, 2) reduce food waste and 3) prevent the negative impact of cacao pulp drainage on the soil. The objective of the consortium is to study the feasibility of developing and deploying mobile processing unit(s) (MPU) in Ecuador for the valorisation of cacao pulp into nutritious juices, including the further scaling through partners. The project combines the need to adapt the technologies to local circumstances and engagement with potential ff-takers and/or sponsors, this also creates the business opportunities for the export of Dutch technologies.