Adoption Of Horticultural Science
The aim is to generate high yielding varieties using seeds cultivated in controlled environments following traceability norms and using trained personnel. The use of clonal gardens and grafting ensures homogeneity.
The in-house ability to generate better performing vegetal matter has meant that intenstification is now a reality. Since 2013/2014, Ivory Coast has seen a 66% rise in land area for cocoa but yield per HA has remained stagnant (500 KG/HA). A production that uses far too much land for minimal yields has led to deforestation and low prices. By planting at 2200 trees/HA compared to national average (1000 - 1500 trees/HA), we achieve better yields using far less land.
Irrigation = perene, stable production.
There are dedicated irrigation units for each plantation. There are currently, two separate installations that service each site (electrified). Water from nearby river is surface-pumped, filtered then stored. A storage capacity of more than 2000 cu.m. On the plantation, there is a use of Precision based micro-irrigation (drip system). Use state of the art soil monitoring devices helps measure humidity.
Constant soil monitoring is carried out using onsite soil labs and in-house pedologists. The aim is to determine the impact of the activity on the landscape. As a result, it helps determine crop nutrient needs, calculate fertiliser volume to apply. Adequate precautions are taken to avoid contamination through well defined collection protocols, adequate storage & transportation infrastructure, temperature control and timely analyses in labs. The team works with other departments to ensure results interpretation.