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El niño affecting cacao production in Ecuador

El Niño Conundrum: How is cacao production affected, and what we can do about it

Ecuador, often hailed as the birthplace of chocolate, boasts a rich history of cacao cultivation. However, our country's chocolate production, particularly its cacao plants, can be significantly affected this year by El Niño, a climate phenomenon characterized by the warming of sea surface temperatures in the Pacific Ocean.

El Niño brings about unusual weather patterns, including heavy rains and flooding. These extreme weather conditions can damage cacao plantations, disrupting the growth cycle of the trees, and even spread diseases that affect cacao pods. In Ecuador, 57% of the total cacao production is located in the provinces of Los Ríos, Manabí y Guayas, and is expected to have a loss in output of around 40%, affecting small cacao producers.

However, Conexión Chocolate, local producers, and the chocolate community in Ecuador have been working to develop strategies to mitigate the impact of these climatic events with sustainable solutions:

  • Agroforestry: Growing cacao with trees enhances soil structure and prevents flooding, which is crucial in heavy rain.
  • Soil Health: Practices like cover cropping and composting create resilient soils.
  • Water Management: Efficient irrigation counters excessive rainfall and drought.
  • Resilience Training: Educating farmers empowers them to adapt quickly.

Future Outlook

We're all about giving respect and support to Ecuadorian small cacao farmers and producers and doing our bit to keep the planet happy and green. We've made thoughtful choices while crafting our chocolate to make sure we're on the right track. And try to be part of the change as much as we can of corse with delicious chocolate creations.

El Niño reminds us of our role in nurturing resilience and Ecuador showcases the harmony of human ingenuity and nature's unpredictability. As we indulge in Ecuador's best chocolates, let's savor the commitment with sustainable practices—one cacao bean at a time.

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