The Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) has approved a US$827,000 grant to finance a programme to promote the competitiveness of Ecuador’s fine aroma cacao, an internationally recognised product used to produce high-quality chocolates.

The project will promote better cooperation among businesses in the cacao chain, the matching of demand and specialisation of the chain, competitive access to international markets and dissemination of the outcomes of the programme.

Among the beneficiaries will be 1,000 cacao producers, 25 producer associations, 120 producer trainers, 63 producer delegates, 60 local buyers, 20 exporters and two second-tier entities – Federacin de Cacaoteros del Ecuador (Fedecade) and Unin de Cooperativas Cacaoteras del Ecuador (Unocace).

The Ecuadorian Cacao Exporters Association (Anecacao) and the Ecuadorian Export and Investment Promotion Corporation (Corpei) will carry out the programme and supply US$357,000 in counterpart resources. Germany’s Agency for Technical Cooperation (GTZ) and other donors will contribute to the counterpart funding.