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1 January 2002 The Globalization of a Ceremonial Tree: The Case of Cacao (THEOBROMA CACAO) among the Mopan Maya
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Abstract

The uses, perceptions, and economic significance of cacao have radically changed in the past 25 years among the Mopan Maya in southern Belize. Cacao was once perceived as a ceremonial crop with little cash value. Over the past 25 years though, cacao has become the most important cash crop grown by the Mopan Maya. The Mopan Maya grow organic cacao that has allowed them to tap into a specialized, high-end chocolate market. However, the emergence of cacao as an important cash crop has altered traditional uses and created conflicts in villages where increasing acreage of reservation lands are planted with cacao, thereby assigning a commercial value to previously communal lands.

Michael K. Steinberg "The Globalization of a Ceremonial Tree: The Case of Cacao (THEOBROMA CACAO) among the Mopan Maya1," Economic Botany 56(1), (1 January 2002). https://doi.org/10.1663/0013-0001(2002)056[0058:TGOACT]2.0.CO;2
Published: 1 January 2002
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