330 travel agents, tour operators and journalists attended the webinar "Ecuador: Land of Chocolate". The seminar was given by experts employed by the Ministry of Tourism of Ecuador. Its aim was to train international tour operators about the history, routes and cacao plantations, as well as Ecuador as ideal destination to taste delicious chocolate bars. All this was done to ensure the effective sales of this destination.


The online training was done in several sessions on Tuesday 24 and Wednesday 25, November 2015. It was dictated in five languages: Spanish, English, French, Portuguese and German.




The online seminar was divided into four categories. The first was "History and origin of cacao in Ecuador". They spoke of the cacao boom and the export of the "Gold Seed". They also spoke about the varieties of this fruit: outsider, trinitarian, and the best known with Fine Aroma and Arriba cacao. Ecuador is the main world exporter of this variety; the country holds 63% of the world´s market.


The second webinar category was called "Enjoying the Ecuadorian chocolate". They talked about chocolate bars, their international awards and prizes; the specialty shops where one can buy these delicious bars; community tourism options in various regions; a selection of places where one can get health treatments (APA's) based on chocolate, and finally, the places where special dinners and menus are offered.


The third chapter discussed the "Best Chocolate Routes". Guayaquil - Vinces is the first route, where one can enjoy a cocoa hacienda and its heritage architecture. The second route is Guayaquil - Manglares Churute (Naranjal Canton). There, visitors can walk nature trails in the protected area and also taste the delicious local cuisine in Las Cañas Hacienda. Finally, they mentioned Route that comprises several points of interest from Quito to Misahualli, in the Amazon.


To close the webinar, they gave "Tips and additional interesting facts" about chocolate in Ecuador. The four worlds of Ecuador were classified according to the strongest tourism themes in each of these regions. When mentioning Galapagos, they talked about ecotourism; the Costa was related with adventure; they highlighted the ancestral culture of the Andean region, and emphasized community tourism in the Amazon.







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