ECOTIERRA - Investment capacity of small farmers to reverse the vicious cycle of migratory agriculture
Ecotierra mitigates climate change and reverses land degradation by investing in cooperatives of small coffee and cocoa producers to allow them to transition to sustainable agroforestry systems.
Ecotierra does so through the combination of lending patient microcredit (at half the market rate) to small farmers, building the infrastructure required to add value to the agricultural products and increase productivity (e.g. mills, collection, centres, compost production centres), sales services, and VCS certified carbon projects. It is financed by a private equity fund, Urapi Sustainable Land Use. In Latin America alone there are more than 155 coffee producer cooperatives, and Ecotierra is currently working with only 7 of them offering significant market opportunities. Furthermore, beyond coffee, the business model could be applied to other dry commodities such as cocoa and nuts.
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