Peru exports cocoa beans to Netherlands

Isabel Guerra

Peruvian exports of cocoa beans to the European Union (mostly organic cacao) have been heading to Netherlands during the first quarter of 2009.

Netherlands bought Peruvian cocoa beans for a total of US $1.5 million dollars,which means an increase of 358%, reported the Lima Chamber of Commerce (CCL).

It should be noted that the world major suppliers of cocoa beans are mostly African countries including Ivory Coast, Ghana, Nigeria, Cameroon and Togo.

Agriculture Minister Carlos Leyton said the exports of cocoa are expected to grow between 5% and 10% from last year, if the market prices remain stable.

"There are approximately 65,000 hectares of cocoa cultivations in Peru, which produce some 32,000 tonnes and provide the income to 35,000 poor families," said Leyton.

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