Cocoa is the principal ingredient in chocolate and a product of the cacao tree. These trees grow best in the understory of tropical forests. By providing technical assistance and economic incentives to farmers, the fund is also promoting the conservation of tropical forests.
A joint project of The Nature Conservancy and the Inter-American Development Bank, the fund reflects a new trend in philanthropy. 'People are looking for new ways to give, and, in particular, ways to give that capture the power of the marketplace and show measurable results,' says David Whitehead, director of development for The Nature Conservancy.