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Revista de Ciencias Agrícolas

Print version ISSN 0120-0135On-line version ISSN 2256-2273


BALLESTEROS-POSSU, William; NAVIA E., Jorge Fernando  and  SOLARTE-GUERRERO, Jesús-Geovanny. Socio-economic characterization of the traditional cacao agroforestry system (Theobroma cacao L.). Rev. Cienc. Agr. [online]. 2021, vol.38, n.2, pp.17-35.  Epub Oct 14, 2021. ISSN 0120-0135.

Cacao farmers face many challenges to increase yield while adjusting their farms to future environmental and socio-economic uncertainties. Improving the management practices of cacao (Theobroma cacao L.) cultivation systems requires knowledge of their baseline and the determining factors affecting them. The main goal of this research was to characterize traditional cacao agroforestry systems of smallholder farmers in the Municipality of Tumaco, Nariño, Colombia. Using a semi-structured survey and a sample of 218 farmers, the socioeconomic characteristics of the cacao production system were analyzed. Multiple correspondence analysis (MCA) and principal component analysis (PCA) grouped and discriminated the cacao growers. The PCA formed five components representing 50.86% of the total variability, while the ACM grouped them into five factors explaining 29.82% of the variability. The cacao cultivation is a traditional activity of smallholder farmers with very low yields. The age of the farmers is over 50 years old, with despicable levels of education; there was no evidence of generational change. The study shows that the traditional cacao production system is not an attractive activity for young people or investors given its marginality and low economic projection. Timely strategies and subsequent early actions will be imperative to face the main environmental, socio-economic, and productive challenges, which will allow the cacao activity to be a source of well-being for cacao growers and the environment in the region.

Keywords : Pacific coast; Tumaco; typification; yield; production systems; Afro-Colombians.

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