ADM Cocoa Ensures Quality Cocoa Beans Through SERAP Training
ROLLE, SWITZERLAND, May 3, 2013 – ADM Cocoa, through its sustainability program SERAP (Socially and Environmentally Responsible Agricultural Practices), continues to improve the livelihoods of farmers in cocoa producing communities by providing training in techniques that will help them to improve bean quality. The design of the training programme began with the conception of SERAP, in 2002 and since then has reached more than 60,000 cocoa farmers throughout Côte d’Ivoire, Nigeria and Indonesia.
The SERAP programme provided by ADM Cocoa gives training to farmers in four key areas, namely: social, environmental, agricultural practices and group organization, and in addition offers financial incentives to farmers to produce higher quality beans. While the financial incentives benefit farmers directly, the successful training results in higher quality cocoa end products and therefrom, more effective manufacturing processes. The training is also designed to increase farm productivity with the goal of improving the cocoa yield per hectare in a sustainable way, resulting in more beans of a better quality .
“Since becoming part of the SERAP program and participating in trainings and implementing Good Agricultural Practices (GAP), I am happy to observe yield improvement, which has not only impacted my income with the premiums that I receive, but has also encouraged me to invest in the future of my land,” said Therese Kumassi. Therese Kumassi is a member of ADM Cocoa’s partner coop, COOPACA of Amélékia, and farms cocoa on 1.6 of her 2.2 hectares of land, which has thus far yielded 674 kilograms of cocoa for the 2012/2013 season.
To properly assess bean quality, cocoa farmers are taught to look at four major visual criteria, including clusters, waste, black beans, and foreign material. Cocoa farmers are trained to recognize and eliminate these elements in order to build a foundation for premium products by obtaining only pure and clean cocoa beans.
“Monitoring efforts over a five year period (2007-2012) have shown that farmers participating in the SERAP program have consistently yielded higher quality cocoa beans. For example, cocoa beans from the SERAP program have on average contained 20 percent less moisture and shown significant reductions in foreign material and in black beans,” said Michiel Hendriksz, ADM Cocoa’s director of sustainability.
SERAP has again taken the lead in reaching independent, non-organized farmers that represent approximately 80 percent of the cocoa farming community in Côte d’Ivoire and live in rural areas that are often deprived of access to other sustainability initiatives. These SERAP training efforts have expanded the reach of the programme beyond the organized farmers belonging to cooperatives that are already benefitting from SERAP or comparable programs.
For further information, please contact:
ADM International Sàrl
Tel: + 41 (0)21 702 8400
Fax: + 41 (0)21 702 8888