Davao Cacao: Source of World’s Best Chocolates
Who would have thought that one of the world’s known chocolate bars like Mars heavily rely for their cacao supply on the Philippines, specifically the Davao region.
Another significant chocolate maker based in Springfield, Missouri, USA which specializes in single origin chocolate in small batches, the Askinosie Chocolate, also sources out raw cacao supply from Davao City.
The owner, Shawn Askinosie, personally visited Malagos, a small community found in the outskirts of the city. Convinced that the area is perfect for quality cacao production, Askinosie formalized partnership with local farmers to supply the company with raw cacao.
Through the company, the Davao White Chocolate Nibble Bar was named by the Times of London as one of the Ten Best Chocolate Bars in the World.
Giving back to the community that positively helped Askinosie Chocolate find its niche in the global market, the owner constantly pours in social development projects like establishment of Internet connection and enough number of computer units which can be of great use to the students of Malagos Elementary School.
Mars Chocolate, having been long established in the region, has also contributed much to the growth of the cacao industry.
The Mars Cocoa Development Center (MCDC) that started in 2008 was built to bring positive environmental and socioeconomic benefits of sustainably grown cocoa to farmers.
It is through the center that farmers get to learn best practices in cocoa cultivation. It is here that they learn new methods in pest control to better improve the quality of their cocao.
More than 3,000 farmers have been part of the center, most of them graduated from the Farmer Field School.
MCDC has expanded its coverage from Malagos to other Davao provinces like Davao del Norte and Davao Oriental. Satellite demonstration farms were set up in those areas to further cater to more farmers and start engage in cacao production.
Continue reading at EDGE Davao