Smallholder Coffee Farmers Achieve Double-Digit Income Increases Supported by Walmart Foundation Grantees


World Coffee Day.  (Image courtesy: Pixels)
World Coffee Day. (Image courtesy: Pixels)

As World Coffee Day approaches, Indian coffee farmers celebrate improved yields and increased income by adopting the latest farming practices and technologies. Key contributors Precision DevEscape (PxD) And TechnoServe, Powered by the Walmart Foundation. Small farmers and Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) by adopting technology, data, substantial framing practices, and increasing market access. While Precision Dev reaches out to 70,000 coffee farmers in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh, TechnoServe engages with over 10,000 farmers across 8 FPOs.

An impact study conducted by Sambodhi, an India-based impact measurement firm, which assessed the effectiveness of the Walmart Foundation’s investments so far in increasing livelihoods and income for Indian FPOs, indicated that that interventions by implementing partners contributed to stronger systems and processes at the FPO level. . This has led to higher income and profitability as well as increased representation of women at the farm level and in FPO leadership. The study highlights that participating FPOs have a higher ability to provide inputs, help sell end products into more diverse markets and now generate 29% more revenue on average than comparable FPOs. The Walmart Foundation works with implementing partners to strengthen FPOs to build a sustainable coffee value chain.

PxD enables farmers to use advanced techniques and set high standards in coffee cultivation in the coffee growing regions of Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh in collaboration with the Walmart Foundation. PxD’s focus on digital agricultural advisory and market connectivity has facilitated increased production and better income for coffee farmers. Additionally, their guidance has resulted in a reduction in pesticide use.

To address limited market access and fair price distribution for smallholder coffee farmers in Karnataka, with PxD IDH (Sustainable Trade Initiative) is working on a two-pronged strategy: engaging international coffee traders to include smallholders in their value chains and building institutional capacity with FPOs to target training programs. Coin which has benefited more than 5000 farmers and four FPOs.

TechnoServe is working to improve the productivity and income of coffee growers in Andhra Pradesh and has reached out to over 10,000 farmers in 500 villages in the state. Their training programs have helped farmers adopt more sustainable agricultural practices such as harvesting and mulching. Additionally, they have helped farmers establish and enhance their financial management and ensure transparency.

TechnoServe has assisted FPOs working with coffee to set up their own post-harvest infrastructure such as wet mills, drying yards, hybrid dryers, and storage facilities. This has increased the ability of FPOs to consistently sell larger quantities and better quality coffee. They have worked with FPOs to educate farmers about these quality parameters and help them gain market and financial access. Under the program, farmers have reported a 17 percent increase in production and 17 percent better income from coffee. A substantial increase in their net worth of production over the past two years contributed to this increase in income.

In partnership with TraceX, TechnoServe provides traceability to coffee farmers, enabling them to get better prices for their produce. This collaboration ensures consistency in the quality of coffee produced, increases access to farmers’ markets, and promotes sustainability in the sector.

Julie Gehrke, Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, Walmart Foundationsaid, “The Walmart Foundation remains steadfast in its commitment to empowering smallholder farmers by supporting transformative digital innovations in local agricultural communities. On World Coffee Day, we celebrate the remarkable progress made by coffee farmers in India. Celebrate, who have access to the latest advisory services, training programs, and technologies. By adopting modern techniques and market linkages, these farmers are revolutionizing coffee farming, resulting in sustainability. , productivity and income have improved significantly. Organizations like Precision Development, and TechnoServe are playing a key role in driving this digital transformation. Delivering tangible economic and social benefits, and ultimately strengthening local farming communities.”

Naraksha Shetty, Chief of Programs, Precision Development; said, “At Precision Development, we are extremely proud of our program, which is only possible thanks to the generous support of the Walmart Foundation. The program has been a game-changer for smallholder coffee farmers, providing invaluable, hands-on access to more than 70,000 people. Provides customized support. Coffee and spice farmers in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh who are now able to make better, timely decisions for their crops. Together we are nurturing coffee crops, empowering communities. are, and are promoting a bright future for farmers in India.”

Krishnan Hariharan, Senior Practice Leader, TechnoServe India and Project Director of ‘Sustainable Livelihoods for Smallholder Farmers’ programme. said, “These farming families are growing a high-value commodity in coffee. By coming together through a Farmer Producing Company, they can leverage collective leverage to ensure better prices and value for their coffee. Over the next two years, our The goal is to advance the benefits of collectivism for coffee farmers in the region. We are working to help FPOs become market players that promote a sustainable and gender-inclusive coffee value chain. through which farmers can enter new market segments and grow alongside the coffee industry.

First Published: 29 Sep 2023, 17:31 IST


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