ColaCoca Cola is the world's largest soft drink manufacturer in the world.
FARC has targeted paramilitary coca fields, killing peasants working there.
reported that in 2003 the number of hectares devoted to coca cultivation fell 16 percent, to 86,000, the lowest level since 1997.
For many of the subsistence farmers in areas such as Putumayo, coca is the only crop that will provide enough income for survival.
According to the report, some farmers (including Cuaran, who is pictured) have willingly eradicated their coca plants to comply with Colombian law and taken advantage of alternative development programs, but these farmers still have their legal crops destroyed by chemical drift.
They extort protection money from coca
and poppy growers and might be narcotraffickers.
The CNP generates quarterly estimates of the illicit coca
crop by flying over coca
growing regions on at least a quarterly basis to search for new growth and to generate an estimate of the illicit coca
Of course we're against this policy," complained Baldomero Caceres, an adviser to Peru's state-owned ENACO (Empresa Nacional de la Coca
), which exists solely to buy domestic production of coca
leaf and sell it on the local market.
There is an epidemic of coca
paste use in South American countries, he says, which has led to numerous psychiatric hospital admissions.
Bolivian Congressman Evo Morales, the cocalero leader who came within 43,000 votes of winning the popular vote for president in 2002, warns that if a solution isn't found, there will be "permanent confrontation, and coca
will become synonymous with militarization, synonymous with war.