Document Type



Master of Arts (MA)


Latin American and Caribbean Studies

First Advisor's Name

David Bray

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

Astrid Arraras

Third Advisor's Name

Karen Paul

Date of Defense



The purpose of this thesis was to investigate the central question: "How the institutional factors, sustainability aspects, marketing and green markets condition the potential for chicle commercialization to increase incomes and to contribute to tropical forest preservation in Quintana Roo, Mexico?"

I reviewed general literature on chicle, Non Timber Forest Products, institutions, sustainability , marketing and green markets. During the summer of 2001 I held forty semi-structured interviews with relevant actors in Quintana Roo.

Main findings were that producers need to increase control over the production process. Under current extraction practices ecological sustainability is likely to be maintained, but underutilisation of the resource leads to an economic unstable situation. In marketing organic chewing gum health aspects need to be emphasized to improve the effectiveness of marketing.

It was concluded that green markets offer potential, institutional problems need to be addressed and emphasis on connecting to the emerging organic markets and marketing messages is necessary.





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