Agreement allows the sale of improved CATIE cocoa varieties in Nicaragua
29 May 2014
Thanks to a new agreement between CATIE and FENACOOP signed the 23rd of April in Nicaragua, it is now possible to purchase improved cocoa varieties tolerant to moniliasis – the result of extensive genetic breeding programs implemented by CATIE.
Signed by John Beer, director of the Research and Development Division at CATIE, and Sinforiano Cáceres, legal representative of FENACOOP, the agreement gives FENACOOP the authority to commercially distribute the improved cocoa material in Nicaragua making it the first and only organization with this right in the country.
The new varieties include six Trinitario clones with high production, tolerance to moniliasis and acceptable industrial processing quality. Moreover, the varieties have tolerance to Phytophthora palmivora, display precociousness and are of lower-growing height.
A percentage of profits return to CATIE for the maintenance of the International Cocoa Collection (IC3) germplasm bank and for development of new varieties. CATIE’s cocoa collection is a world-class treasure with open access, conserved for perpetuity.
According to Wilbert Phillips, head of the Cocoa Genetic Improvement Program at CATIE, producers and partners report that they are obtaining excellent results with the material developed by CATIE within Costa Rica and other Central American countries where test sites are located. However, Phillips cautioned that these plantations are still relatively young and optimal yield results will only be appreciable once trees mature.
The test sites were part of CATIE’s Central American Cocoa Project which finished in 2012, as part of which some 1000 Nicaraguan families were able to trial and benefit from these new varieties.
For more information on the cocoa varieties available in Nicaragua download the guide
Cocoa Genetic Improvement Program - CATIE
CATIE’s Germplasm Bank