Producing areas: The last Samoa Agriculture Census 2019 listed cocoa as one of the top five permanent crops grown by more than 15,923 agricultural households in Samoa. This is significant in terms of livelihoods impacted by this crop with a lot of women and youth assisting with cocoa plantations and value adding (mostly for Samoan cocoa mass) to sell for income. Working on diversifying value added products will increase the market and uses for cocoa which will positively impact many households.
Beneficiaries: Cocoa is one of the most grown permanent crops by smallholder farmers in Samoa and this will diversify the market opportunities available to women and youth in communities and promote their income generating opportunities. Samoa is recorded to have one of the highest rates of obesity in the world. Cocoa is reported to contain beneficial phenolic compounds particularly the flavanol content which can potentially prevent the risk of cardiovascular disease. The development of various cocoa products under OCOP can potentially boost the availability of products containing phenolic compounds for healthy eating.
Dr Seuseu Tauati
Scientific Research Organisation of Samoa