Day 15
5 minutes further training for a cocoa farmer in Indonesia

More income through training More income through training

Properly plant and care for cocoa trees and harvest high-quality cocoa beans

Do you already have a chocolate Santa at home? Last Christmas season, around 169 million of them were produced in Germany alone (EHI Retail Institute GmbH, 2023). In total, almost 13 kg of chocolate are produced per capita in Germany every year (Federal Statistical Office, 2022). That would be roughly the amount of two and a half chocolate bars per person per week. In order to be able to produce chocolate at all, cocoa beans are needed. The cocoa beans for production have to be imported from other countries. Some of these cocoa beans come from Indonesia. Although the Ivory Coast and Ghana are by far the largest producers, cocoa cultivation in Indonesia is particularly promising (Fountain, A.C. & Hütz-Adams, F., 2022). By growing cocoa trees in the shade of indigenous, fast-growing light wood species, in the so-called agroforestry system, smallholder farmers can increase income for themselves and their families and at the same time make a contribution to the climate.



Further education for cocoa farmers in Borneo



Local trainers teach cocoa farmers how to grow cocoa in the agroforestry system

Countable effort


Number of trained smallholder farmers



50 cocoa farmers were trained to grow cocoa in the agroforestry system

Systemic effect


Improved income for cocoa farmers and their families as well as protection and enhancement of the land used through agroforestry practice


Cocoa is almost exclusively produced by smallholder farmers (Bermudez, 2022). The main cultivation area in Indonesia is currently Sulawesi. Cocoa cultivation in Kalimantan on the island of Borneo is not yet very widespread, although the good taste and high quality of the cocoa from this region has already convinced some chocolate manufacturers. Due to a lack of structures, farmers in the rural regions of Borneo are not always able to finance the livelihood of themselves and their families with the sale of cocoa beans. The majority of the cocoa value chain is managed by a few large cocoa traders and processors (Gayi, S. K. & Tsowou, K., 2017). Among other things, such “chocolate giants” create price pressure on smallholder farmers, which they cannot keep up with. Overall, this leads to poor working conditions in the cocoa sector and to further deforestation in order to obtain more income from more land for cocoa (BMZ 2019). German chocolate consumption is not unconnected to this (GIZ 2023), e.g. almost 10 kg per capita were consumed in 2022 (Tagesspiegel 2023). Strengthening individual cocoa farmers can lead to a better position on the market and thus to more income. The first step is to train the smallholder farmers. The more knowledge they have about the cultivation and care of the cocoa trees as well as the harvesting and processing of the cocoa fruit, the higher the quality of the cocoa beans. With high quality cocoa beans, a better income can also be achieved.

The good deed

With this good deed, you enable cocoa farmers in Borneo to participate in so-called Farmer Field Schools. The training imparts knowledge and technical skills to increase cocoa production and quality. Environmental problems are also addressed in the training courses and the cocoa farmers are encouraged to cultivate cocoa in an environmentally friendly way. Other topics include cocoa harvesting and processing, market demand and quality assurance methods. Practical exercises such as planting seedlings, tree care and ecological pest control are also part of the training. Participants also receive a manual on agroforestry (a combination of forestry and agriculture) that summarises all the information. By implementing what they have learned, the cocoa farmers in rural regions of Borneo should be able to benefit from the high demand for cocoa, especially from Europe, and improve their quality of life - without destroying the environment in the process.

Barito Timur & Gunung Mas in Kalimantan on Borneo

About Indonesia






Number of inhabitants



Gross domestic product per capita per year



Human Development Index

Cocoa ceremonies on the island of Bali are very popular, especially with tourists. In spiritual events, hot raw cocoa is drunk, accompanied by ritual dances, prayers and singing.