Giving Cocoa Trees The Shade They Need

2 min read
Protecting and restoring

Made in the shade: Distributing shade trees to farmers

“We were told that shade trees give life to our cocoa trees as they do to humans. I believe it now – the results are clear for all to see.”

– Dominic, Cocoa Farmer
Ashanti, Ghana


Dominic owns four acres of land in Adansi Atobiase, located in the Ashanti region of Ghana. Here he has farmed cocoa for the past twelve years. Even after a decade on the land, there are still new things to learn. He says: “Although I have been a farmer for many years, joining the Nestlé Cocoa Plan supply chain has deepened my understanding of the role shade trees play in cocoa farming.”

Previously, his knowledge of the role trees play in agriculture was limited to removing non-desirable species from his farm. Now, with training from Nestlé, along with field visits from experts, he is aware of the benefits of proper tree coverage can bring. “Initially, I thought that the shade trees were a nuisance, but now I know that they protect the cocoa and land from the hot sun. I certainly recommend them to all cocoa farmers.”

The shade trees act to reduce the harsh effects of the sun, providing moisture-rich spaces for crops to survive during the dry season. Dominic has found it to be a success. As a result, on the advice of Dominic, the Nestlé Cocoa Plan has distributed more shade trees to other farmers in the area.

Discover our latest “Towards Forest Positive Cocoa” progress report