Event Details

October 24 - 25, 2018


Av. das Nações Unidas
São Paulo, Brazil


The 2018 WCF Partnership Meeting will travel to a native land of Theobroma cacao and explore “The New Frontiers of Cocoa Sustainability”. Join WCF in São Paulo, Brazil, on October 24-25.


Register for the 2018 Partnership Meeting and optional field trip using the links below:

English Registration | Registo Português

Questions? Email registration@worldcocoa.org.

Registration Rates

General Admission (U.S. Dollars)  WCF Member Non-Member NGO / Government
Advance (by September 24) $850.00 $1,000.00 $600.00
Standard (after September 24) $1,000.00 $1,200.00 $800.00


Expert speakers and panelists
Interactive sessions
Networking opportunities

Field Trip

WCF is pleased to announce a field trip after the 2018 Partnership Meeting in Bahia, Brazil (Ilhéus region), on October 26-28.

Participants will explore Bahian cocoa up close, with site visits to research centers and the region’s unique Cabruca cocoa production model, and meet sector leaders who are tackling quality and innovation challenges locally. We will be based in Ilhéus, the city of the cacao ‘gold rush’, where, according to local author Jorge Amado, “there was no conversation in which the word ‘cacao’ did not play an essential part”. This is still the case with a high concentration of scientists working on cocoa health management and quality and productivity issues. Some local cocoa farms are also known for their pioneering environmental practices protecting the threatened Atlantic Forest in Bahia.

Photo by Dengo
Photo by Dengo
  • 10:45am Departure
    São Paulo CGH Airport
  • 12:50pm Arrival
    Ilhéus, Brazil
  • 2:30pm Visit Condurú Farm, the cocoa plantation linked to sustainability leader Guilherme Leal, a 1,000-hectare “productive conservation” project
    Condurú Farm
  • 6:30pm Hotel Check In
  • 8:30am Visit smallholder cocoa farm
  • 11:00am Visit cocoa nursery
    Biofábrica de Cacau
  • 12:30pm Lunch
    Traditional cocoa farm Government of Bahia
  • 2:30pm Visit CEPLAC (Research and Technical Assistance in Cocoa – Cepeq/Ceplac)
  • 4:00pm Visit Cocoa Innovation Center (CIC)
  • Evening Free time to visit Ilhéus’s historic center
  • 9:55am Depart from Ilhéus Airport
    Ilhéus Airport to São Paulo CGH Airport
  • 12:15pm Arrive at São Paulo CGH Airport
    São Paulo CGH Airport


Please register here for the Partnership Meeting and Field Trip. Field Trip fees represent an additional $1,600 (non-refundable and non-transferable). Only Partnership Meeting participants are invited to join. The registration fee is a package offer and we are unfortunately unable to accommodate à la carte trip requests.

To guarantee a superior experience, we are limiting the number of participants to 30, on a first come first served basis.

Included in the cost: Logistics and local support, economy class airfare from São Paulo – CGH to Ilhéus and return, airport transfers in Ilhéus, lodging in Ilhéus (two nights with breakfast), local transportation by private bus or vans, access to all site visits, travel insurance and bilingual guides with strong expertise in cocoa production.

Not included: Friday morning transfer to easily accessible São Paulo – CGH airport (15-minute drive from Hilton Morumbi), meals and incidentals, and international travel.

Expert Guides

Headshot of Ray Major

Ray Major Expert Guide / Specialist in Cocoa Production, Processing & Sustainability

Ray Major retired from the Hershey Company in September, 2015 after 39 years working in the chocolate and confectionery industry. At Hershey he held a variety of positions in manufacturing, crop research, product development and procurement. For six years he ran Hershey’s manufacturing operations in Brazil and for ten years he traveled the world searching out fine cocoas for Hershey’s Artisan Brands, Scharffen Berger and Dagoba. In 2010 he was made a Hershey Fellow in recognition of his long service to the cocoa industry. His experience in cocoa production and chocolate making spans five continents. His last responsibility was managing Hershey’s global cocoa sustainability program.

Today he runs a consulting business focused on tropical agriculture, cocoa production, processing, chocolate making and sustainability. He supports the cocoa sector from farm to finished product, bridging the gap between cocoa producer and chocolate maker.

Headshot of Pedro Ronca

Pedro Ronca Expert Guide / P&A Marketing

Agronomist at the "Luiz de Queiroz" School of Agriculture (ESALQ / USP), postgraduate in Agribusiness Coffee by FIA / USP and in Economics and Coffee Science at the University of Trieste / illycaffè, Italy. Agronomic consultant in coffee production, experience with planning projects, conducting and managing properties with adequacy of production systems, productivity increase, post-harvest and specialty coffee production and strategic market consulting, business plans and conscious use of natural resources in most Brazilian coffee regions. In the area of sustainability, he has broad acting as auditor for certification in sustainable production chains, including chain of custody and adequacy of properties for certification. It is a rural producer and coffee farmer in the south of MG. Manager of the Brazil Program of the Global Coffee Platform and the CocoaAction Brazil Initiative of WCF.


Book your hotel room at the discounted premium WCF room rate direct through the Hilton Morumbi online portal: http://group.hilton.com/World-Cocoa-Foundation

Hotel rooms are available at the discounted WCF single room rate of $265 USD (+ 5% VAT and service fees) or the discounted WCF double room rate of $280 USD (+ 5% VAT and service fees).

Room rates include:

  • Complimentary breakfast at main hotel restaurant
  • Complementary guestroom internet

Reservations must be completed by Friday, September 21, 2018 to take advantage of the WCF rate. Participants are responsible for booking their own accommodations. Rooms are booked on a first come, first served basis. Please book your room early, as reservations are limited.

Note: If you are having any issues with booking your hotel reservation online at the Hilton, please email or call the hotel directly at Brisa.Martins@Hilton.com +55-11-2845-0000 and mention you are with the World Cocoa Foundation.

Hilton Morumbi
Hilton Morumbi

Travel & Visas

All participants are responsible for their own travel, including valid passport and visa. WCF recommends that you complete the visa process by the end of September. Invitation letters can be provided by WCF to Partnership Meeting attendees. Questions? Email registration@worldcocoa.org.

Download Materials

  • Entrance Visa Requirements - Brazil


Headshot of Dario Ahnert

Dario Ahnert Agronomist, Senior Professor of Genetics and Breeding, State University of Santa Cruz - UESC

Agronomist, PhD in plant breeding, senior professor of genetics and breeding of the State University of Santa Cruz – UESC. He is specialist in cacao, with extensive experience in cultivar development, germplasm, cultivation and management, agroforestry and post-harvesting. He is author of more than 50 articles, many book chapters and produced cultivars. He is co-Inventor of TropMix and Anima cacao quality beans.

Headshot of Fatima Ali

Fatima Ali President, Kuapa Kokoo

President of Kuapa Kokoo Farmers’ Union. In 2000, Fatima Ali was elected by her zone as the recorder (Purchasing clerk) in charge of the mobilization of members’ cocoa. In 2010, she was elected to the Akontombra district executive council as president. Ms. Ali was subsequently elected to the National Executive Council (NEC). Ms. Ali was then appointed by the NEC as the acting Union president. She was re-elected as president of the Kuapa Kokoo Union in 2014.

Headshot of Alan Batista

Alan Batista Investment Analyst, World Resources Institute Brazil

Investment Analyst at World Resources Institute (WRI) Brazil, Mr. Batista is responsible for investment and economic modeling of forest restoration and reforestation models. Prior to joining WRI Brazil, he began his working career as a researcher in the field of genetics in the pulp and paper sector. Afterwards he joined Ibá (Brazilian Tree Industry). He holds a degree in Forestry Engineering from the University of São Paulo (USP) and a Master of Science in forest economics at the University of Freiburg in Germany and the University of Eastern Finland.

Headshot of Joseph Boahen

Joseph Boahen "JB" Aidoo CEO, Ghana Cocoa Board

CEO of the Ghana Cocoa Board, a position to which he was appointed in January 2017. Mr. Aidoo served from 2000-2006 as Regional Minister for Ghana’s Western Region under the administration of former President John A. Kufuor, and from 2000-2012 as a Member of Parliament with the New Patriotic Party from the Western Region. He has been a researcher at the Institute for Land Management and Development at the University of Science and Technology in Kumasi (Ghana), where he has researched and written extensively on issues related to land tenure and cocoa.

Headshot of Juana Botero

Juana Botero Director of Sustainability, CasaLuker Cacao

Director of Sustainability at CasaLuker Cacao, with more than 10 years of experience in managing social projects in vulnerable communities. Ms. Botera is a social entrepreneur and founding partner of "Indelible Social", a company dedicated to the creation of social responsibility strategies for private companies. She studied law at Eafit University of Medellin, with an emphasis in public international law from the University of Salamanca, Spain.

Headshot of Nicko Debenham

Nicko Debenham Vice President, Head of Sustainability, Barry Callebaut

Vice President, Head of Sustainability at Barry Callebaut, Managing Director of Biolands Group, and Chairman to the Cocoa Horizons Foundation, Nicko Debenham helps guide Barry Callebaut's Forever Chocolate Initiative. Mr. Debenham brings more than 30 years of experience working on the cocoa value chain. In the 1980’s, he learned the business from scratch, working directly with cocoa farmers. He possesses unique expertise in sustainable development within the cocoa industry, in collaboration with governments, partners and NGO’s worldwide. Mr. Debenham plays a key role in bringing together pioneering knowledge from the cocoa industry to lead the strategic direction of the sustainability development programs, benefiting cocoa farmers’ families and their communities around the world.

Headshot of Eunice Gutzeit

Eunice Gutzeit Entrepreneur and Cocoa Grower, Panorama Farm

Entrepreneur and cocoa grower Eunice Gutzeit has extensive experience as a cocoa grower in the Amazon region at Panorama Farm located in the municipality of Urua in Para state. She is an entrepreneur in the food import sector including for retail and export of Amazonian products. She is currently working to produce fine cocoa and open new markets for Amazonian cocoa. Ms. Gutzeit has a graduate degree in business management and foreign trade from FMU University in São Paulo.

Headshot of Petra Heid

Petra Heid Head of Sustainability & Communication, Chocolats Halba

Head of Sustainability & Communication at Chocolats Halba, Petra Heid has 20 years of experience and broad interdisciplinary knowledge in the area of cocoa sustainability and certification of the whole cocoa value chain and in other soft commodities. Currently she works as a free-lance consultant and actively participates in several committees that deal with sustainability in the cocoa supply chain including the working group climate resilience and biodiversity of the Swiss Platform for Sustainable Cocoa. She received her master's degree in Geo-ecology from University of Beyreuth.

Headshot of Julienne Assoko Kouadio

Julienne Assoko Kouadio Cocoa Farmer, Literacy Instructor

Cocoa Farmer in Abengourou, Côte d'Ivoire and Literacy Instructor, Ms. Kouadio was recently consulted to provide advice on gender issues in cocoa communities.

Headshot of Cathérine Yah Kouakou

Cathérine Yah Kouakou Cocoa Farmer, Facilitator, Procacao - GIZ, Community Leader

Cocoa Farmer, Facilitator for the Procacao - GIZ project, and Community Leader at SCAEK Co-Op-CA. Ms. Kouakou graduated with a two-year technical degree in agriculture and cooperation.

Headshot of Guilherme Leal

Guilherme Leal Co-Founder, Dengo

A Brazilian social entrepreneur, founder, and co-chairman of the board of Natura, a leading Brazilian cosmetics company, which owns the British beauty brand The Body Shop and the Australian Aesop. Mr. Leal is also the co-founder of Brazilian chocolate company and WCF member Dengo. He is an investor in impact businesses in areas such as forestry management, sustainable agriculture, renewable energy, and urban management. Since 2008, he has been engaged in creating Instituto Arapyaú, a private family foundation committed to supporting sustainable development through the articulation of organizations and leadership to help promote a transition for a more just, prosperous, and inclusive world.

Headshot of Joseph Larrose

Joseph Larrose Group Director for Sustainability, Touton

Group Director for Sustainability at Touton, Mr. Larrose is in charge of delivering Toutons sustainability ambitions across the company's cocoa, coffee, and ingredients departments. He designed and developed Touton's Sustainable Cocoa Strategy, including the company's Rural Service Center and Climate Smart Cocoa programs. Mr. Larosse is actively involved in various sector initiatives such as the CEN/ISO norm on traceable and sustainable cocoa and the Cocoa & Forests Initiative. He holds an Executive MS in Management from HEC Paris and a Master's in Law and Development.

Headshot of Jean-Philippe Marelli

Jean-Philippe Marelli Pest and Disease Management Director, Mars, Incorporated

Pest and Disease Management Director at Mars, Incorporated. Jean-Philippe Marelli has a distinguished academic career, obtaining his undergraduate degree in Agronomy at the Institut National Polytechnique in Toulouse, France, his Masters in Science from Imperial College U.K., an international MBA in Project Management from FGV University in São Paulo, in partnership with the University of California, Irvine, and his Ph.D. in Plant Pathology from Pennsylvania State University in the U.S. After his post-doc, he joined Mars, Incorporated in 2009 as a plant scientist at the Mars Center for Cocoa Science in Bahia, Brazil, where he became Science Director and led many projects on cocoa breeding, fermentation, and pathology.

Headshot of Carolina Mejia

Carolina Mejia Project Manager, 12Tree

Project Manager at 12Tree, Carolina Mejia has five years of experience in the cocoa industry, beginning with developing sustainable post-harvest cocoa infrastructure and later moved into plantations infrastructure improvement and cocoa plantation management. She is a structural architect by training, has a diploma as Expert in Sustainable Development, and is LEED GA accredited.

Headshot of Ruth Moloney

Ruth Moloney Owner, Integrated Cacao and Hydroponic Greenhouse

Owner of an integrated cacao and hydroponic greenhouse operation in Southern Belize, Ruth Moloney has worked all along the cocoa supply chain. She started first as a strategic cocoa buyer for Nestle USA, in trading and sustainability for Armajaro and now on the production side after running a large coconut/citrus operation also in Belize. While at Armajaro she set up St Vincent Cocoa Company and was one of the key architects of the USAID funded Peru Cacao Alliance. Australian by birth, she has a Degree in Agricultural Science from the University of Queensland and a Masters of Commerce from the University of New South Wales.

Headshot of Guilherme Moura

Guilherme Moura President, Cocoa Sectorial Chamber, Ministry of Agriculture, Brasília

President of the Cocoa Sectorial Chamber at the Ministry of Agriculture in Brasília. Mr. Moura is also president of the Camacan Rural Union in t he cocoa-growing region of Camacan, Bahia. Since 2008, he has been the vice president of agricultural development at the Agricultural and Livestock Federation of Bahia State. He is a cocoa grower in Camacan and is an adviser to the Bahia State Council of Environment and Sebraes Deliberative Council. Mr. Moura has a business management degree from Catholic University of Salvador, Bahia and an MBA in agribusiness from the Federal University of Paraná.

Headshot of Emmanuel Opoku

Emmanuel Opoku Executive Director, Cocoa Health & Extension Division (CHED), Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD)

Executive Director of CHED at COCOBOD, Emmanuel Opoku has worked in the cocoa industry since 1992. In his current role he is responsible for leading Ghana's cocoa rehabilitation campaign. He has researched and published academic articles in cocoa socioeconomics. Mr. Opoku recently submitted his latest academic research study, "Strategies for Gaining Certification for Cocoa Bean Production", for the Doctoral Business Administration Award.

Headshot of Carlos Polidoro

Carlos Polidoro Director General, Embrapa Soils

Director General of Embrapa Soils, Carlos Polidoro has decades of experience in the field of agronomy, with emphasis on soil fertility, fertilization, and experimental techniques. Mr. Polidoro has a degree in Agronomy from the Federal University of Vicosa, a master's degree in Agricultural Microbiology from the Federal University of Vicosa, and a Ph.D. in Agronomy (Soil Sciences) from the Rural Federal University of Rio de Janeiro - Doctor in Plant Production.

Headshot of Judy Rodrigues

Judy Rodrigues Executive Director, High Carbon Stock Approach

Executive Director of the High Carbon Stock (HCS) Approach. . The HCS Approach represents a widely recognized practical, field-tested methodology to implement commitments to halt deforestation in the tropics, while ensuring the rights and livelihoods of local peoples are respected. Just Rodrigues has extensive experience related to responsible sourcing of agricultural commodities linked to deforestation-risks, multi-stakeholder engagement, forest management certification and conservation. She studied natural resource conservation at the University of British Columbia and has a marketing degree from McGill University.

Headshot of Rick Scobey

Rick Scobey President, World Cocoa Foundation

President of the World Cocoa Foundation, where he leads the strategic development of the organization, serves as the primary spokesperson on behalf of member companies, and leads the direction of the cocoa industry on sustainability priorities. Mr. Scobey brings to WCF more than 30 years of rural development and poverty reduction expertise at the World Bank Group.

Headshot of Henrique Souza

Henrique Souza Cocoa Farmer, Ouro Fino Farm, Jabaquara, Bahia

Cocoa farmer at Ouro Fino Farm in Jabaquara, Bahia, agronomical consultant, pioneer in research and extension of agroforestry systems in various biomes. Henrique Souza has consulted for private companies, institutes, organizations and individual growers in several regions of Brazil and many countries in Latin America and Africa. He has been a speaker at various seminars and symposiums about sintropic agriculture, forests, water and agroforestry systems. Mr. Souza has extensive experience in restoration of degraded areas, implementation and management of agroforestry systems and rural and sustainable development projects. He develops agroforest experimental fields in his own farm, including his model farm and the "caatinga" project in the semi-arid region of Bahia.

Headshot of Eduardo Trevisan

Eduardo Trevisan Senior Project Manager, Imaflora

Senior Project Manager at Imaflora, leading projects and strategies to being more sustainability on agribusiness commodities like, coffee, cocoa, beef and also local development projects in Brazilian Amazon. Mr. Trevisan's specialities are organizational and project management, sustainability and environmental policy, certification, NGO strategy, negotiating and managing NGO-corporate partnerships, fundraising.

Headshot of Ann Tutwiler

Ann Tutwiler Director General, Bioversity International

M. Ann Tutwiler is the Director General of Bioversity International, a global research-for-development organization focused on using and safeguarding agricultural and tree biodiversity to attain sustainable global food and nutrition security.

Ms. Tutwiler has almost 30 years of experience in agricultural policy and development working in the public and private sectors. She was formerly the Special Representative of the Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations in Geneva, and served as FAO Deputy Director General for Knowledge. Previously, she worked for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Agency for International Development, the Hewlett Foundation and a multinational agribusiness firm. In 2002, she co-founded a global think tank in agricultural trade policy. She holds a master’s degree from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree from Davidson College.

Thank you to our generous sponsors!





Join the Partnership Meeting as a Cocoa Sponsor! WCF’s Partnership Meeting is the only event dedicated to cocoa sustainability and improving farmer livelihoods. Gain visibility and recognition through sponsorship. Email register@worldcocoa.org to learn more about sponsorship opportunities.

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