TFO Canada and Tim Hortons Join Forces to Empower Coffee Farming Communities in Central AmericaTuesday, August 02, 2016 > 17:03:30
In many Central American countries, coffee is a way of life. From trees to beans, coffee production is a major source of income and livelihoods for local communities. The proceeds from coffee sales generate millions in export revenues that are a key driver of economic growth in producing regions.
Consumer awareness is creating new demand for sustainable coffee that is produced with social, environmental and economic benefits returning to producers. But while demand for sustainable coffee is growing, millions of smallholder farmers lack the tools, knowledge and resources to unlock this potential. Within Central America, farmers are also struggling to control the devastating effects of “La Roya” epidemic, a coffee leaf rust that is sweeping through crops in the region.
With the aim of improving lives and the economic resilience of coffee farmers, TFO Canada has partnered with Tim Hortons to expand its Coffee Partnership programme in coffee growing regions of Guatemalan and Honduras. Through funding from the Government of Canada provided through Global Affairs Canada, the four year project (2014-18) will deliver technical assistance and training to 6,000 coffee farming households. This assistance will promote good agronomic practices and farm management with the target of increasing overall coffee farming yields by 25%. In total, the program will touch the lives of more than 30,000 coffee farmers, their families and communities.
In addition to improving the viability and productivity of farming, the Coffee Partnership will also aim to improve environmental sustainability, gender equality and youth engagement. The local implementers of the programme are HRNS, a German NGO which undertakes economic development and environment sustainability projects, and TechnoServe, a US-based NGO which works with enterprising people in the developing world to build competitive farms, businesses and industries.
Forging a new path towards better, more responsible trade would not be possible without the kind of innovative thinking that has led to the Coffee Partnership in Central America. TFO Canada looks forward to continuing to expand this programme as we empower more coffee farmers to unlock the global market for their product.
“Since the start of this project, I am seeing more productivity
which leads me to thinking it is worth my time and money.
In fact, I am looking at getting my sons involved as well.”
Project participant from San Antonio La Paz, Guatemala, March 2016