Some of our products from our ecological farm
Only in the 10 ha of cocoa, more than 90 species of birds, more than 20 species of butterflies and 13 species of bees have been recorded..
Agroforestry plantations are systems of land use where the benefits of the biological interactions of trees, shrubs and herbs with crops and animals are optimized. The purpose is to diversify and optimize production for sustained management.
The agroforestry systems at Santuario Macao have made it possible to improve productivity and reduce the inputs to be used in production. We have managed to mitigate the ecological damage caused in the past by deforestation, erosion and soil compaction; which had caused infertility cycles for soil.
This type of environmentally friendly agricultural technique has helped us optimize the use of natural resources, making better use of sunlight, increasing water infiltration and retention, and better nourishing of the soils. On the other hand, agroforestry has provided us with a more favorable environment for production, making it more sustainable. The native trees planted provided a better habitat increasing the biodiversity of the area – only in the 10 hectares of cacao, more than 90 species of birds, more than 20 species of butterflies, and 13 species of bees have been recorded. The presence of these creatures and these evolving systems have helped protect the crops from wind and erosion. The leaves and organic matter improved the physical, chemical and biological structure of the soil, making it more resistant. The shade allowed to conserve soil moisture.
The graph shows us a summary of the process of three decades, which was taken to obtain the Macaw Kakau agroforestry system. It also exemplifies certain species of plants used for the different strata of the forest. It illustrates some of the hundreds of animal species that benefit from agroforestry, including the scarlet macaw.
Our cacao plantation, due to its agroforestry characteristics, is capable of storing and fixing carbon, enriching biodiversity and avoiding soil degradation. At the same time, it generates employment in the short, medium and long term; improving the quality of life of families in local communities and allowing an ideal ecological balance as a productive system.
It is not common to find cacao plantations in the Central Pacific region of Costa Rica. Most and the largest are in the Caribbean or in the Northern regions of the country. We believe that having cacao in an agroforestry system can help with positive changes in the future in this region.