Last Wednesday, the launch of the project 'Raíz Natura; strengthening small Guatemalan spice growers at the root, powered by nature' took place in Guatemala. This is a three-year pilot project for the sustainable cultivation of cardamom. Koppert Foundation is partner in this project, together with Heifer international (NL and Guatemala) and Popoyan, our distributor in Guatemala.
Sustainable cultivation cardamom
Raíz Natura is a pilot project for the sustainable cultivation of cardamom, implemented by Heifer within the Green business belt programme. This is a 10-year programme that Heifer started in 2019 with the goal to raise the standard of living of more than 100,000 small farmers who produce spices in the Alta Verapaz region of Guatemala.
Koppert's financial contribution and the direct contribution of expertise, know-how and products from both Koppert and Popoyán will support small-scale cardamom farmers in Alta Verapaz. The overall objective of the project is: "To strengthen the production capacity of small producers in Guatemala by improving seedling production, developing agroforestry systems and applying good organic farming practices."
This is the first time that the Koppert Foundation will be using Koppert products and knowledge in a pilot project, in addition to making a financial contribution. We are very pleased that our local distributor also participates in this project. Next to the technical supervision of the project, Popoyan will also supply a number of their products. Popoyan has already gained experience in improving the cultivation of cardamom in another area of Guatemala,
It is expected that the production can be improved a lot by adapting cultivation methods. A combination of crops in an agro forestry system will also increase production. The farmers earn an average of 1800 dollars a year now. It has been calculated that they need 4700 dollars a year to meet their basic needs. We hope that our joint efforts will lead to improved yields and indeed provide farmers with a better income.
Please find more information about this project on the website of Heifer International.