In a statement, the company said global demand for cacao is expected to grow at an annual rate of approximately 5% for the foreseeable future. “In the past, increasing demand has been met by increasing the total acreage under cacao cultivation. However, this approach has come at a high cost in terms of deforestation and environmental degradation.”
As part of its Cocoa for Generations strategy, Mars said it is committed to meeting its future cacao needs through a 100% sustainable supply-chain.
Cocoa for Generations is how Mars intends to step-change efforts, lead the way and invite others to partner with them in a new approach to achieve a model of modern sustainable cocoa farming for tomorrow.
Working with NSIP, Mars said the key will be to significantly increase the genetic potential of cacao to produce higher yields and improved quality on the same or even less farmland.
NSIP is an analytics company located in USA and Mexico, dedicated to the conservation, evaluation and utilisation of natural genetic resources to deliver high performing plant materials.
Dr Steven Tanksley, chief technology officer of NSIP, said: “NSIP is excited to be providing both its expertise and advanced analytical tools in this collaboration with Mars to develop and offer higher yielding, more resistance and higher quality cacao varieties for the benefit of farmers and consumers worldwide.”