Peru-based cacao plantation company United Cacao has had its soil study report approved by the General Directorate for Agricultural Environmental Affairs (DGAAA), a division of the Peruvian Ministry of Agriculture.
The approved soil study is the final element for completion of the company’s environmental certification programme known as the Proyecto de Adecuacion de Manejo Ambiental (PAMA) submission. The PAMA is an environmental document issued by the Peruvian government that certifies and accredits United Cacao’s agricultural practices and activities and confirms that such activities comply with the country’s environmental rules and regulations.
“This is an important milestone for the company. Approval of the soil study allows the company to officially submit the PAMA, which is the definitive environmental certification programme requested by the Peruvian authorities,” notes United Cacao executive director Anthony Kozuch.
United Cacao expects final ratification of its PAMA in 2017.
In addition, the company has updated shareholders on the progress of its operations in Peru. Highlights include United Cacao having planted over 1,843 hectares of land in Peru to date, of which 1,643 hectares is planted corporate estate and 200 hectares relates to the company’s innovative small-farmer programme.
United Cacao continues to target a production yield at maturity of between 2 and 2.75 tonnes of cacao per hectare, which is broadly in line with similar corporate estates in the Peru. The company is adopting some advanced planting and grafting practices, which, if successful, might significantly increase the expected yield, however the advanced nature of these practices may lead to both a delay in reaching maturity or a shortfall in yield.
The group has also planted 400 hectares of high premium, fine flavour Sacha Gold cacao. This variety, it says, has not been planted before on such a large corporate scale and as yet there is no certainty that it will achieve the predicted yield. Management continues to monitor the performance of the blend and will provide updates on its progress.