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LEAF 2018 SPEAKER IN FOCUS: Simon Bakker

Simon Bakker is the CEO of Kennemer Foods International, a Filipino agribusiness that produces and markets high quality agricultural products.

Kennemer specializes in the sustainable growing, sourcing and trading of fermented cacao beans and is the Philippine’s leading supplier of cacao beans to the international market. Starting with 200 farmers in its Grower Program in 2012, Kennemer has now worked with more than 15,000 farmers in more than 30 provinces and planted 15 million cacao trees. Through its inclusive business model, the company provides end-to-end support to smallholder farmers including access to financing, good quality inputs, technical assistance and a guaranteed market.

By intercropping with coconut and other trees, Kennemer has been able to engage farmers at scale to improve yields, to increase and sustain smallholder farmers’ incomes and to expand the footprint of Philippine cocoa without cutting down trees. Kennemer aims to engage 30,000 farmers and plant 40 million trees by 2025.

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