"FRED" is ONE !!
FRED, a cocoa tree planted by Santa in the 2014 planting season, is now one year old !!
Fred is growing strongly and will start producing cocoa next year to bring more smiles to his farmer friend, Umar.
Umar is the leader of a farmer group in the southern part of Soppeng, who have been helped by Cocoa Care sponsor, the International Plant Nutrition Institute (IPNI) for the past two years.
Umar has more than doubled his cocoa farm productivity over that time to achieve 1.8 kg/ tree ( approx 1.8 ton per ha) and significantly improved bean size ( bigger beans) and reduced damage and losses due to pest and diseases.
Umar's son, A. Nurdin, was the top achiever in the group, increasing his productivity from 0.7 kg / tree in 2012 to over 2 kg per tree ( 3 ton per ha) in 2014 and reducing pest and disease damage from over 50% of Pods damaged to less than 30% pods with any kind of pest of disease damage. That all means a lot of extra income for this cocoa farming family, putting them very much on the path to prosperity and sustainability.
Farmer Umar- top row 3rd from right. Farmer Nurdin- top row 2nd from left. Photo taken Feb 2, 2015 with fellow IPNI farmer.
Nurdin's wife, Ratnawati, who was trained as a financial management trainer, has passed on her knowledge to the other women in the group who will ensure that they never slip back into the economic trap they found themselves in two years ago.