REINTRODUCING COTTON TO HAITI
34,000 FARMERS Estimated number of smallholder farmers (husband and wife farming together on 17,000 farms) who will grow cotton within the next 5 years, but never on more than half their land in order to ensure continued local food and moringa production. 16.4 MILLION POUNDS Projected annual output of certified organic cotton lint from a centralized gin supplied exclusively by Haitian smallholder farmers. FARM INCOME MORE THAN DOUBLED Based on conservative projected prices, it is estimated that each farm will receive $840 for the cotton raised on half their land, noting that the current average annual income is $660 and inputs will be earned through tree planting. 25 MILLION TREES Number of trees grownand cared for by farmers over 5 years in order to earn cotton, moringa and other seeds, tools and agricultural training.
HOW IT STARTED click on this image to download a complete version of the feasibility study
PROJECTED IMPACT IN YEAR 5
Cotton was once Haiti’s fourth largest agricultural export, but it had disappeared by the late 1980s. A Timberland-sponsored feasibility study determined that it made sense to reintroduce the crop. Now the Smallholder Farmers Alliance has a 5 year plan to do just that, with Timberland as the first customer (subject to quality, price & volume).
REINVENTING THE SMALLHOLDER SUPPLY CHAIN Global food, beverage and clothing companies are increasingly purchasing from smallholder farmers throughout the developing world. However, the supply chains that begin at the farm gate and go through to points of sale have typically evolved over time without being guided by an underlying impact model.
The 34,000 farmers/17,000 farms projected to be involved by the end of 5 years will be owneroperators of four agroforestry cooperatives. They will sell certified organic cotton and other products to a new for-profit export, marketing and finance company in which the farmers will be shareholders.
There has been no cotton grown in Haiti since the late 1980s, and so this represents a unique opportunity to custom-build a new kind of social enterprise supply chain that greatly expands the role and benefits to smallholder farmers.
As with SFA’s basic operating model, participating farmers will earn cotton seed, tools and agricultural training by growing, transplanting and looking after trees. Over 5 years they will have planted 25 million trees.
The Smallholder Farmers Alliance (SFA), in partnership with Timberland as a client, are in the first stages of building a new cotton supply chain that will blend public and private capital in order to deliver a comprehensive set of support services to smallholder farmers.
The real success of this new supply chain starts in year 6 when the whole operation will operate as a business with no further public funding. And all the support services will be financed through profits, as well as the ongoing planting of 5 million trees a year.
Growing sustainable cotton starts with planting trees that become a form of bio-currency for participating smallholder farmers. The Smallholder Farmers Alliance (SFA) is a Haitian non-profit organization that applies business solutions to help feed and reforest a renewed Haiti by establishing market-based farmer cooperatives, building agricultural export markets, creating rural farm businesses and contributing to community development. Hugh Locke, President, Smallholder Farmers Alliance + Impact Farming, [email protected]
Timote Georges, Executive Director, Smallholder Farmers Alliance, [email protected]
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