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Corporación Fortaleza del Valle - A credit line to improve cocoa exports

Corporación Fortaleza del Valle

A credit line to improve cocoa exports


Fair trade

Trade in products that have been certified and carry a fair trade label. An example of this is a farmer’s cooperative that collectively sells its cocoa to a fair trade organization.


Promotes and/or supports the protection of the environment. An example of this is an organic farming cooperative.

Corporación Fortaleza del Valle is an organization that represents five cocoa growers' associations of around 674 small cocoa growers in the coastal province of Manabí. As one of the leading cocoa traders in the region, it aims to improve the living conditions of cocoa farmers by supporting them in obtaining a better price for their cocoa, and by providing technical assistance.

Due to its geographical setting, Ecuador does not have a large industry, and the economy is predominantly rural. Cocoa production is much lower than that of bananas, shrimp or flowers, but it boasts the popular fine flavour Arriba Naçional variety, which only grows in Ecuador. Some growers combine their cocoa production with other short-cycle subsistence food productions and/or livestock.

Oikocredit has decided to give Fortaleza del Valle a credit line in support of the organization's focus on fair trade production, sustainable farming and social performance. In addition, the organization's activities generate new job opportunities in the area, including, for example, in tourism, at plant nurseries et cetera.

This new credit line will enable Fortaleza del Valle to expand its export activities and become less dependent on buyers' advance payments. This will lead to higher prices which will, ultimately, benefit the livelihoods of the 674 associated cocoa farmers, who will be supported with training, farm rehabilitation and other assistance that helps improve the quantity and the quality of cocoa.

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