This initiative, which is supported by the United States Department of Agriculture, Jacobs Douwe Egberts (JDE), Keurig Dr. Pepper, and Neumann Kaffee Gruppe (NKG), provides financing, training, and planting materials to participants, 35% of whom are women
San Pedro Sula, Honduras
Coffee is the leading export crop and the source of livelihood for more than 120,000 families in Honduras. The crop covers more than 300,000 hectares and creates at least one million jobs every year.
Similar to other agricultural products, coffee faces challenges in terms of productivity, which affects the profitability of producing families. To address this, the Project “Maximizing Opportunities in Coffee and Cocoa in the Americas” (MOCCA), together with BECAMO, have established a partnership that benefits 2,600 producers with access to training, as well as credit line and certified planting material that aims to improve their productivity.
“BECAMO and MOCCA benefit small producers through field school methodologies and under the USSP Producer Services Unit, providing a comprehensive package of advice on good agricultural practices, access to markets, quality inputs, and certified planting material. In addition, BECAMO has expanded its offer to include financing options: short term, for on-farm improvements, and long term for the renovation of coffee plantations, under flexible conditions for individual and grouped producers”Emilio Medina, General Manager of BECAMO
The Director of MOCCA, Ryan Bathrick, stated that the partnership with BECAMO is part of a regional strategy that includes more than 25 companies, organizations, and research centers in Central America and Peru, whose purpose is to improve the productivity and profitability of more than 60 thousand coffee growers through training, access to better markets, financing, and planting material.
In Honduras, MOCCA is supported by Jacobs Douwe Egberts (JDE), a Dutch company which owns numerous beverage brands (coffee, tea, and hot chocolate).
In addition, partnership activities include a gender equality awareness strategy within the community to foster a more inclusive and sustainable coffee market, which is sponsored by the Keurig Dr. Pepper company.
“MOCCA and BECAMO have supported us a lot with technical assistance. Since we became part of this partnership, we have learned better agricultural practices to renovate and rehabilitate our coffee farms; we are also working with organic fertilizers, which allows us to save money on the fertilizers”Juan Mejía Arévalo | Coffee producer | Ocotepeque, Honduras
Access to financing
BECAMO offers financing producers who are part of its supply chain with the goals of supporting producers in:
- Acquisition of inputs.
- Labor payment for farm maintenance and harvesting.
- Acquisition of coffee processing equipment.
- Farm renovation and rehabilitation.
Throughout our partnership with MOCCA, between March 2021 to March 2022, BECAMO has provided short-term loans for the purchase of inputs, farm management and renovation to more than 1,104 producers worth US $1,637,888. “With respect to the provision of long-term loans, it is important to highlight thath they are awarded under very flexible conditions with terms up to 7 years and a 2 year grace period, aimed at the renovation and rehabilitation of farms. During this first year, 171 loans have been granted with an average value of US $1,715 per person.
For the remainder of the MOCCA-BECAMO partnership, Becamo expects to grant loans to more than 2,000 producers for an estimated amount of more than USD $5 million.
“Through training in good agricultural practices, access to quality planting material and financing, we hope that the coffee growing families within the program will be able to increase their productivity, quality and therefore their profitability and wellbeing”Emilio Medina, General Manager of BECAMO
To renovate a coffee plot, farmers require considerable investments and most of the time access to finance in order to make it possible. A year ago BECAMO started facilitating loans with payment facilities and a 2-year grace period. With this loan more than 1,104 farmers have been able to invest in the purchase of inputs, payment of labor and other maintenance activities to improve their farms.
Certified planting material
BECAMO initiated the implementation of a nursery with which it xpects to produce more than one million seedlings per year with ECOPIL technology. It is the first company to implement this in the country, with the goal to reduce the time needed to establish a plantation, providing adequate genetics, optimal conditions of the seedlings, and zero diseases such as rust. In addition, ECOPIL totally reduces plastic waste caused by the bags in the nursery, since the container does not have any contaminating material and is fully biodegradable.
With the support of World Coffee Research (WCR), leader of the coffee research component of the MOCCA project, BECAMO was able to verify this nursery.
During the first year of project implementation, 140 hectares were renovated and 564,011 plants produced with this technology were planted with the participation of 171 producers in this process.
MOCCA is funded by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) through its Food for Progress Program, which seeks to improve productivity and expand trade in agricultural products.
In Honduras, MOCCA entered into partnerships with buyers and other organizations through which it will train more than 8,000 coffee producers (40% women), providing integration into higher-value markets, technical assistance, research, access to quality genetic material, and catalytic financing models.
MOCCA directly connects producers with markets to have a lasting impact beyond the life of a project. “We partner with companies that not only want to invest in improving coffee quality and yields, but also in the systems that make those improvements possible for the future, such as higher prices, good genetic material for planting, and more direct, feasible and profitable supply chains for smallholder farmers,” said the Director of MOCCA, Ryan Bathrick.
BECAMO is known as a company that buys and sells quality coffee, whether these coffees are differentiated by seals from Bloom, NKG Verified, 4C, Rain Forest, Starbucks CAFE Practices, as well as specialty coffees from high altitude areas and with special processes in wet processing. With the prices of recent years, BECAMO considers that the value added by the producer to the coffee sold is an opportunity to improve his or her income. In addition, with these certification seals the producer has a better marketing opportunity, as the international market increasingly demands more of this type of certified coffee. For this reason, BECAMO has encouraged the producers with whom it works to enter their farms into the certification programs and is executing capacity building projects.
In 2021, BECAMO served 1,500 producers in various programs. However, its goal for 2023 is to reach 3,000 producers in the areas where it operates and provide them with conditions and knowledge that will enable them to improve their income.
For more information, please contact:
GISELLE ALEMAN AYALA
Manager of Communication for Development | MOCCA – TechnoServe