Intended as a first Model Cacao Farm for Livelihood in Western Mindanao, One World Institute has secured 10 Million pesos in initial private funding for the first Model Cacao Farm in Western Mindanao. A total of 12,000 hectares in staggered development starting with a propagation farm, is planned for this region. Additional acreage across Mindanao have been designated a Livelihood, Health and Education site for OWI.
An opportunity has been opened for the Federation of Philippine Chambers of Commerce to invest in the project with its FPACC FARM FUND, giving, small, medium, large investors consolidated investing power to achieve meaningful scale while helping the farmer earn livelihood. The Philippines currently exports its fermented cacao beans to Malaysia where they are processed. The powder and butterfat are then exported to Europe and the U.S.
In an ironic twist of circumstances, the Philippines imports powder and butterfat for its candy and beverage needs. OWI’s “Plant for Market” strategy hopes to benefit the environment as well as to develop and train farmers into nurturing, protecting and defending their soils as they learn to take control of their cacao beans. An agro-farm with 60% shade as the goal will be modeled here. Since Davao grows 90% of the cacao trees, we will be joining the push to step up production by contributing to part of the Mindanao step-up program towards supplying only 2 percent of the 1-million-ton shortage in world supply.
We will pursue with PDS (Plantation de Sikawate) the spread and propagation of cacao varieties that demand premium prices for their unique taste and aroma. OWI’s management team will oversee the different phases of this project as well as supervise the sale and trade of the beans while it trains the farmers on proper farming techniques of high value species. We will be making available soon, the investment program for this region.