Natural Rubber Agribusiness
HEVEA Costa Rica was created with the goal of developing the natural rubber agroindustry in Costa Rica, encouraging independent producers to discover in natural rubber a green, profitable, and above all, manageable option for their farms. Rubber tree cultivation can also be implemented on farms were another crop is the main focus, thereby diversifying production and increasing productivity.
We provide an innovative reforestation model, offering an alternative to the current model in Costa Rica, which has not changed in the last 40 years. It brings a viable and productive alternative, with clear economic, social and environmental benefits.
This opportunity becomes more attractive because Costa Rica currently imports 100% of its natural rubber consumption (10K MT per year approximately) and it has national environmental goals that benefit from this type of reforestation.
HEVEA Costa Rica comes to innovate the reforestation model in the country.
The project is divided in three phases:
Plant nursery and Clonal Garden
The first phase, which is already in operation, is the tree nursery and cloning garden. The product of this phase is seedlings, and is being promoted with reforestation contracts that include:
- Certified seed from clones specific for the climatic conditions found in Costa Rica.
- A technical agronomic program for this agroforestry system.
- Field advice on different levels, as required by the independent producer.
- A forestry system subject to a payment for environmental services (PEAs) contract with FONAFIFO; the project has been validated for its environmental contribution by FUNDECOR.
A purchasing contract from HEVEA CR or one of its subsidiaries assuring the allocation of the production from independent farms.
The second phase is currently in progress. HEVEA Costa Rica is already developing its own plantations, which include 800 hectares in farms located in the areas of Pandora, Guácimo and Cariari in the province of Limón, as well as in the northern part of the country. Some of these plantations are being developed as joint ventures with farmers in the area.
The third phase is industrialization of natural rubber in Costa Rica. This will be done in relation to the critical mass of production we will have in the next four years. A processing plant will be established in 2022, which will purchase local production at a price based on the Singapore Stock Exchange prices for this raw material. The plant will deliver an industrial grade product. This plant will begin its processing phase at the end of 2023.
- Small and medium size farmers with less than 50 ha. of land. The planting of rubber trees will offer an additional income. This will present an opportunity for many farmers to free themselves from government assistance, move out of marginal and subsistence economies and will enable socioeconomic advancement.
- In farms that have other crops as their main focus, reforestation with natural rubber is a way to optimize land use in marginal areas and to maximize production of the unit.
- For individuals or businesses that are looking for a reforestation option, natural rubber production offers an income source throughout the forest cycle, contrary to other types of timber-based alternatives.
- Individuals or businesses who are not in the agricultural sector but have land that does not produce any income
- Associations of agricultural producers.
- Businesses that may want to reduce their environmental footprint through reforestation.
Additionally, we are working in other ways to foster reforestation with natural rubber such as:
- Establishing development programs with public entities like: SBD, FONAFIFO, MAG, INDER, MINAE, Regional Associations, Cooperatives, etc.
- Developing financial instruments specific to the natural rubber focused on the different type of producers:
- Small (< 15 Ha)
- Medium (< 50 Ha)
- Large (>50 Ha)
- Establish development and promotion programs with international entities.