Accessible Soils and Sustainable Environments (ASASE)


Accessible Soils and Sustainable Environments (ASASE)

The Accessible Soils And Sustainable Environments (ASASE) project is a four-year project in the Ghanaian cocoa landscape. It is co-funded by the Netherlands Enterprise Agency (RVO) as part of the Sustainable Development Goals Partnership (SDGP). Driven by a belief that a thriving, climate-smart cocoa sector is possible, this project will work with 5,000 farmers in two of Ghana’s main cocoa producing areas: the Ashanti and Eastern regions. Using a landscape approach, the ASASE project moves away from the traditional focus on the direct supply chain and instead intervenes on 3 levels: working together with cocoa farmers, their rural communities and in local forest remnants.

Key outputs of the project (over 4 years)

- Improved GAP training provided to 5,000 farmers, with more focus on forest conservation, CSC and reforestation
- Promote forest conservation and restoration of degraded lands in 25 forest-adjacent communities
- Providing PES payments for:
  • Conservation of 50 forest patches (100 ha) owned by Beyond Beans cocoa farmers
  • Reforestation of 50 degraded land patches (100 ha) owned by Beyond Benas cocoa farmers

Cocoa farm-related:
- 3,000 farmers supported in adoption of improved farm management practices based on Farm Business Plan (FBP), developed by Beyond Beans
- VSLA groups established and provided with GALS + CHILD support (implemented by PDA)
- 640,000 improved cocoa seedlings and 550,000 shade tree seedlings distributed
- Land tenure and shade tree registration secured for 3,000 farmers (4,500 farms)

Strong partnerships

ASASE brings together national and international partners.
West Africa’s land rights specialist Meridia, dedicated to securing affordable land rights for smallholder farmers at scale, has spent the past five years developing the highly successful FarmSeal and TreeSeal tools for the Ghanaian context. With ASASE, they will be working to provide farmers with land and tree tenure rights through customary certificates.

Meanwhile, civil society organization Tropenbos Ghana brings a wealth of technical expertise in the development of environmental trainings for farmers, as well as their extensive local network.

From the public sector, the Ghanaian Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources (MLNR) will work to ensure the project aligns with national policy such as REDD+ and will use the outcomes to develop future policies to ensure the longevity of this important work.

Finally, leading the partnership, is commodity trading house and WCF member ETG and their associated sustainability foundation Beyond Beans (formerly Cocoanect), whose leadership team bring over 25 years of experience working in sustainability in the cocoa sector.


2020 - 2024


Support the transition from cocoa production as a driver of deforestation, forest fragmentation and degradation to environmentally sustainable and economically viable zero-deforestation cocoa production models that enhance the resilience of smallholder farmers livelihood in key Ghanaian cocoa growing landscapes.