To strengthen Nigeria’s cocoa value chain, we are also leading the Traceability and Resilience in Agriculture and Cocoa Ecosystems of Nigeria (TRACE) project. Funded by USDA’s Food for Progress Program, the five-year project increases productivity in the cacao value chain by applying climate-smart agriculture and expands the cacao market through traceability back to its source. Over 51,000 smallholder farmers will be trained, resulting in a doubling of cocoa productivity and establishing a comprehensive (farm to export) traceability system that meets global standards.
Our commitment to the cocoa sector is not just evident in our international development programming, but in our private sector investments. Ground Up Investing, Corus’ impact investing firm, uses a patient capital approach, that includes equity and debt financing, to grow mission-driven enterprises that deliver positive economic, social and environmental outcomes for smallholder farmers. Ground Up Investing has invested in several companies in the cocoa and chocolate industry that are introducing innovative business practices to achieve these aims. For instance, Uncommon Cacao has pioneered industry-leading transparent trade reporting. Additionally, To’ak Chocolate works with cacao growers and conservationists to preserve the Ecuadoran Ancient National cacao and produce some of the world's most exclusive chocolates. Latitude Chocolate in Uganda has full bean to bar vertical integration at source. These approaches are helping to transform the terms of trade for farmers while supplying sustainable, scalable and environmentally responsible cocoa and chocolate products to highly discerning buyers around the world.
By considering the potential of the cocoa and chocolate sectors to sustainably accelerate the growth of rural economies, our goal is to establish inclusive and equitable market practices that support families and communities.