Friday 22nd April is Earth Day and this year the theme is ‘Invest in our Planet’.
The campaign is calling for a united approach:
We need to act (boldly), innovate (broadly), and implement (equitably).
One co-operative in the Amazonas region of Peru is fulfilling all three of these goals. CECAFE brings together 800 farmers who believe that their coffee is a symbol of wellbeing. The co-operative produces high quality Fairtrade and organic coffee, grown amidst rainforest and mountain ranges.
How can farmers make a difference?
CECAFE members work in harmony with their surroundings using soil conservation methods and apply their coffee pulp as compost. In their dedication to protect and preserve the landscape, they have also launched a 40- year reforestation project.
Where does Shared Interest come in?
Shared Interest has provided finance to CECAFE for almost a decade so that the co-operative is able to pay farmers on time whilst also increasing production. However, the impact goes far beyond this. As production increases, so does the amount of Fairtrade Premium paid to the co-operative. CECAFE has dedicated this additional sum of money to community projects promoting health and wellbeing for farmers and their families.
Founder and General Manager Elmer Sánchez is proud of the traceability of CECAFE coffee and the co-operative pays farmers directly after each harvest.
Elmer said: “The financial support provided by Shared Interest has allowed our co-operative to pay farmers on delivery of their coffee.”
How does this help farmers?
This means that farmers like Segundo and Belver Garcia (pictured above) can increase production, and have the income needed to manage their land effectively so that they can become more resilient to the impact of climate change.
Belver joined his father Segundo at the co-operative over a decade ago. Together with his wife Rosita, they run their family-owned farm, which has been passed down through generations.
This sense of community is something that we share with CECAFE and with our supporters here in the UK. Together, we work towards a better quality of life for people living and working in remote regions. Access to finance is possibly one of the most powerful ways to help businesses in the developing world to support their own communities in facing the issues caused by climate change.