Climate, Environment and Biodiversity
The global program “Sustainability and Value Added in Agricultural Supply Chains” is part of the special initiative “ONE WORLD – No Hunger” (SEWOH). On behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the program promotes the sustainability of 7 selected agricultural supply chains in 11 partner countries.
Agricultural commodities like coffee, cocoa, natural rubber, palm oil, cotton, tea, soybean, and bananas play an important role for rural development in many developing and emerging countries where they form the basis for the life of millions of households. However, their production and processing are accompanied by numerous ecological, economic and social challenges. Often supplied as unprocessed raw material into global supply chains, limited value is added in producing countries. Many farming households are struggling to meet their basic needs and invest in sustainable production practices. Furthermore, these commodities are often perceived as drivers of deforestation and forest degradation.
With consuming markets and multinational companies strengthening their efforts to eliminate deforestation and human rights abuses from the supply chain, sustainability of raw material is becoming a precondition for market access. To address these challenges the program implements the project Sustainable Agricultural Supply Chains (Cadenas Sostenibles) in Ecuador.
The Sustainable Agricultural Supply Chains Project in Ecuador, Cadenas Sostenibles, aims to improve the access of small-scale producers to the global market for sustainably produced agricultural commodities. It seeks therefore to improve the overall sustainability of production of the selected commodities by sustainably increasing productivity, slowing down commodity driven deforestation and promoting business linkages for more sustainable purchase practices of lead companies. Important objectives of the global program and its projects are among others the improvement of productivity, income and employment. To measure the impact of interventions on program indicators two theory-based approach are employed: (i) Gross Margins as a proxy method to calculate income and yield increase, and (ii) Donald Kirkpatrick’s approach to evaluate training effectiveness and thus effects on employment.
After piloting activities in 2020, implementation of the project started in 01/2021 in the banana value chain. The project focuses on the province of El Oro, one of the three regions with the highest banana production in Ecuador bringing together the largest number of small producers (farms with less than 30 ha). From 01/2022 on, the project will additionally support small cacao producers in the province of Esmeraldas. Cacao production in Esmeraldas is characterized by small scaled production systems, a high, cacao induced rate of deforestation.
The political counterpart of the project is the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG) and its aligned institutions, the National Institute of Agricultural Research (INIAP) and the Agency for Phytosanitary and Zoosanitary Regulation and Control (Agrocalidad).
The contractor provides advisory contributing to the project objective along the following project phases with its key tasks: