Ecuador Chocolate

Academic CoursesEcuador

  • MGT 454 - Entrepreneurship: Social Entrepreneurship
  • GDS 302 - Introduction to Social Entrepreneurship
  • INT 301/CSL 210 - Engaging the World: Economic Development in Rural Ecuador
  • SPN 385 - Cocoa Farms: Spanish Interpretation in Ecuador


Program Highlights

This Mercer On Mission will work with chocolate farmers in Ecuador to create sustainable solutions via a direct trade, shared value supply chain. Our service work will center in Zaruma, El Oro, Ecuador, where we will work with chocolate farmers to export their products to market in the United States.

While centered in Zaruma, we will visit chocolate plantations all throughout El Oro. We will learn the ins and outs of the chocolate industry, understand the harvesting techniques, learn the steps to processing chocolate, build a direct trade supply chain, and most importantly, connect with the farmers.

Following the model set forth by Z Beans Coffee, we will learn the concepts of social entrepreneurship and apply those directly to our chocolate venture. Initial trips will lay a sustainable foundation - a foundation built upon fair-trade principles - a foundation centered on the betterment of the Ecuadorian farmer.

On the weekends, students will have the opportunity to visit some of Ecuador’s most beautiful places, including majestic waterfalls and breathtaking views.

Students who participate in this Mercer On Mission will be inspired to take action - to make a difference. Z Beans Coffee founder, Shane Buerster, will share his story, experiences, and knowledge. Students will leave, feeling empowered. They will have the ability to import and export products - the ability to start their own international venture. Most importantly, students will leave having made many Ecuadorian friends, eager for their return.


6/15 - 6/26 Classes in Macon, GA

6/27 - 7/17 Zaruma, El Oro, Ecuador

Contact Information


For more information, e-mail or call (478) 301-2992.