Cocoa Intensification in Indonesia - IPNI Cocoa Care Program


29 Apr 2016

2015 Annual Interpretive Summary

Since the early 2000’s there has been an ongoing decline in quality and productivity in cocoa in Indonesia, which has undermined cacao farm profitability and presents a substantial risk to the survival of the industry in Indonesia, while at the same time global markets are strong. This project identifies cacao-farming families with the necessary land and family resources to become a sustainable cacao family business. Project information is used to estimate and project fertilizer market demand for Sulawesi and guide market development. The project has commenced in 2013 and will run until 2019.

These cacao farmers will be trained both “in class” and “in field” on how to implement good agricultural practices on their farms for maximum productivity. Where necessary, dead or non-productive cacao trees will be rehabilitated or replaced with the best available planting materials. This program demonstrates the benefits of good agricultural practices and 4R fertilization. Soil and leaf sampling will be undertaken within the farms to establish nutritional and other soil needs. This data will be analyzed and ideal soil management practices and fertilizer regimes developed (including K fertilizer) to achieve the optimum, soil condition and nutritional levels for cacao farming. The program will explore and deploy the 4R Nutrient Stewardship concept to guide the fertilizer applications. Test plots will be established within each farm to monitor the impact of these interventions. IPNI and PT Community Solutions International Cocoa Care program, will jointly manage the project. The Cocoa Care team will conduct farmer identification, procurement, field trials implementation and monitoring, while IPNI will provide guidance on scientific methods, statistical analysis of results and managerial oversight.

The project has been extended until 2019 with additional resources from Uralkali Trading (UKT) and UKT’s Indonesian business partner Lautan Luas. The first 25 farms completed trials in 2015. Fertilization has generated significant yield and income increases for farmers, and results will be analyzed and disseminated in 2016/17. In 2015, fifteen new omission plot farms were added under the UKT and Lautan Luas engagement, and more than 75 farms are currently part of the program. A presentation was given at the 2nd International Asia Choco Congress in Singapore in April 2015.

Importantly, the project will demonstrate to farmers the benefits of good agricultural practices, including fertilization, and thereby provide motivation to growers for management change.