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November 30th, 2015
On November 30, 2015, Transmar welcomed Meiji at the graduation of 477 farmers participating in ProducerPlus program. Transmar sources cocoa for Meiji directly from these farmers, who all live in the Vinces area of Ecuador. Vinces is well known for its rich and storied tradition of cocoa growing, as it was the center of cocoa production in Ecuador 100 years ago when the country was the biggest shipper of cocoa beans in the world. Today, Meiji is helping small holder cocoa farmers in Vinces to improve their livelihood by increasing their incomes through higher yields, better farming practices, and enhanced associativity under the ProducerPlus program.

As a symbol of their hard work and successful partnership, Yoshinori Doi, Meiji's General Manager of their Confectionery Business Unit Product Division, shared Meiji chocolate bars with the ProducerPlus members at the event, giving the cocoa farmers their first taste of Japanese chocolate. This was a great opportunity for both ends of the cocoa spectrum to meet and share the final product of their hard work. Transmar and ProducerPlus's local partners also presented saplings, long-reach pruning tools, and fertilizers to the best performing farmers.

Transmar Group and everyone involved with the ProducerPlus program is proud of what the farmers have accomplished thus far and is looking forward to the continued success of this partnership.

Japanese flags greet visitors from Meiji.

Yoshinori Doi addressing the group of ProducerPlus farmers.

Productive farmers are rewarded with pole pruners.

ProducerPlus farmer enjoying the fruits of his labor with a Meiji chocolate bar.

ProducerPlus farmers gather to celebrate their graduation.