Gender Perspectives on Cocoa Production in Ecuador and Peru: Insights for Inclusive and Sustainable Intensification

In coastal Ecuador, cocoa is grown almost exclusively by smallholder households and is traditionally produced using agroforestry practices. Cocoa production is one of the country’s major industries: employing 12% of the economically active population, it is the main source of cash for smallholder cocoa farmers (Blare and Useche 2014). However, smallholder cocoa producers are one of the most economically disadvantaged groups in Ecuador. For this reason, the success of the cocoa industry is seen as critical to alleviating rural poverty.