Smallholder farming provides 60% of Ecuador's food. In the country's southern regions, AVSF and its local partners work with 500 small producers—80% of whom are women—to help them adopt agroecology techniques and sell their crop and livestock products through local markets.
Most of these vulnerable families can boost their daily income by around 20% to 40% by selling their goods directly to markets, because they get a better price. It also benefits the 2,500 urban consumers in the area, who get a chance to discover fresh, local, high-quality produce.
The project aims to strengthen smallholder economies in southern Ecuador and improve the living conditions of 500 smallholder families by helping them sell directly to local markets and get a better price for their agroecological market-gardening, fruit and livestock (poultry, guinea pigs, yogurt and cheese) products, and by helping them gain access to public contracts. It also offers the most vulnerable members of the community (women, young people and retired people) a way to generate stable income by selling fruit and vegetables, and promotes greater recognition for the role women play in the local economy.
The project was launched in 2012 for a three-year period. It offers agroecology workshops (reintroduction of native varieties of tamarillo, selection of native varieties of corn, raising hens, making compost, growing medicinal plants, etc.), fruit and milk processing (sugar cane, cacao, blackberries, yogurt, cheese, etc.) and the organization of new local markets. Plus, campaigns are organized to raise awareness among urban consumers about the benefits of buying fresh, local products from the local markets.
This project is funded by Leclerc'S CENTRAL PURCHASING SERVICE (S.C. Galec)
Check out the following article on RESPONDING TO THE CHALLENGES OF THE 21ST CENTURY WITH AGROECOLOGY. WHY AND HOW?
Want to see the project in action? Click on the video below.
Video by David Jimenez Henao