Fairtrade and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) have launched a new fund, aiming to strengthen the resilience of smallholder farms in Africa, Asia and Latin America, and increase local food security.
Projects will be carried out together with a total of 80 Fairtrade-certified producer organizations in 14 countries. All the measures are being supported by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ) through funding by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) as a SI AGER joint project. As part of this initiative, Fairtrade cooperates with the Fund for the Promotion of Innovation in Agriculture (i4Ag) to implement structure-building measures.
Farmers face spiralling costs
Since 2020, the pandemic and the effects of the war in Ukraine have increased global food prices by about one third, fertilizer prices by more than half and oil prices by almost two thirds. Fairtrade producers worldwide are directly affected by these increased costs. Almost all Fairtrade producer countries have reported continuously rising food and energy prices. This directly affect the livelihoods of farmers and workers.
The Fairtrade Minimum Price acts as a vital safety net for farmers against volatile market prices. The additional Fairtrade Premium is invested into projects of farmers’ choice, such as the distribution of food packages or new agricultural techniques. The new resilience fund is intended to provide additional support to farmers who are particularly affected by the cost of living crisis.
Projects in 14 countries
Projects supported by the fund include the diversification of farmers’ incomes (to build economic resilience and meet food security needs), production of organic fertilizer for farmers’ own use (to reduce costs and dependencies) and access to new technologies in food production (to improve productivity and quality).
The resilience fund is led by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the Fund for the Promotion of Innovation in Agriculture (i4Ag) and Fairtrade Germany, and runs until February 2024.
Source and picture: Fairtrade International