Costa Rican orange-peel project turns sour

Costa Rica

Orange juice producer Del Oro thought it had scored a public-relations coup when it signed an environmental services contract two years ago with authorities in charge of a neighboring conservation area in northern Costa Rica. The deal involved a novel attempt to breathe life back into the depleted soils of deforested national park lands using tons of waste orange peels and pulp. Rather than reaping praise, however, Del Oro found itself fending off attacks by politicians, a bitter industry rival and the media. The critics accused the British-owned company of defiling Costa Rica’s natural patrimony and acting as an agent of “environmental neo-colonialism.” Del Oro spent $100,000 in legal and public relations fees to defend the deal, but to no avail. Last... [Log in to read more]

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