Farmer Partners

We've worked with small farmer organizations since our founding in 1986, beginning with a co-op in Nicaragua, and now sourcing from over 40 small farmer organizations in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the United States. Our longstanding relationships allow us to secure the best crops, while continuing to develop innovative programs in collaboration with the co-ops, from crop diversification to quality trainings to women's leadership development. Meet some of our farmer partners by clicking on the maps. 

North America

  • CEPCO, Mexico

    CEPCO was founded in 1989 in the midst of a severe crisis in Mexico's coffee industry. Originally formed through the efforts of more than 7,000 small coffee producers, today CEPCO is the largest association of small coffee producers in Oaxaca.

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  • CESMACH, Mexico

    Formed in 1994, Cafe Ecológico de la Sierra Madre de Chiapas S.C. (CESMACH) is a coffee co-operative in the southern highlands of Chiapas, Mexico.

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  • CIRSA, Mexico

    The members of CIRSA come primarily from two main ethnic groups, Tzotzil and Tzeltal; if Spanish is spoken at all, it is spoken as a second language.

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  • Comon Yaj Noptic, Mexico

    Members of Comon Yaj Noptic have been monitoring bird species in their communities for the past four years in an effort to provide on-the-ground data for a conservation non-profit in Mexico.

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  • Finca Triunfo Verde, Mexico

    Finca Triunfo Verde (FTV) has worked extensively with Grounds for Health to implement a community-focused effort to test women for cervical cancer. Grounds for Health has trained co-op staff to run and maintain the clinic and continue the effort.

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  • PRAGOR, Mexico

    Equal Exchange is excited to announce a new partnership with PRAGOR, a progressive group of small-scale avocado farmers in Michoacán, Mexico.

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South America

  • ACOPAGRO, Peru

    ACOPAGRO was one of the first grant partners that Equal Exchange started working with on the USAID Co-operative Development Program (CDP) back in 2010, in collaboration with implementing partner, TCHO.

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  • ACOZC, Paraguay

    La Asociación de Cañicultores Organicos de la Zona Central (ACOZC) was formed in 2002 to improve the livelihoods of small-scale sugar producers.

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  • ANTOFAGASTA, Bolivia

    High in the Andean mountains east of Lake Titicaca, a few dozen families cultivate coffee and food crops on small farms ranging from 4 to 6 acres in size.

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  • ASPROCAFE Ingruma, Colombia

    Equal Exchange bought our first container of coffee from The Alto Occidente Coffee Cooperative of Caldas (CCAOC) in 1995.

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  • CAC Jose Olaya, Peru

    The José Olaya Cooperative is named for Afro-Peruvian independence hero José Olaya.

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  • CACVRA, Peru

    The Agrarian Coffee Cooperative of the Apurimac River Valley (CACVRA) was formed in 1969 to market coffee for small-scale farmers in Peru.

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  • CCAOC, Colombia

    Equal Exchange bought our first container of coffee from The Alto Occidente Coffee Cooperative of Caldas (CCAOC) in 1995.

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  • CECOVASA, Peru

    CECOVASA (The Organization of Agrarian Coffee Cooperatives of the Sandia Valleys), was founded in 1970, when a group of Peruvian coffee farmers in the Lake Titicaca region came together to avoid selling their beans to exploitative middlemen, and instead process and export their beans collectively.

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  • CEPIBO, Peru

    CEPIBO was formed by small scale banana farmers located across northern Peru as a non-profit cooperative to provide access to the international market by representing, coordinating and marketing banana exportation for 12 grower associations.

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  • El Guabo, Ecuador

    The story of El Guabo, one of Equal Exchange’s farmer partners, is a success story in grassroots organizing.

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  • Fortaleza del Valle, Ecuador

    Fortaleza del Valle was founded in 2005 to improve living conditions for small-scale cacao producers in the Manabí Province of Ecuador. The co-operative is made up of five regional groups, with over 630 farmers as members.

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  • Manduvira, Paraguay

    Cooperativa de Producción Agro-Industrial Manduvira Ltda (Manduvira Co-op) is located in the village of Arroyos y Esteros (Streams and Swamps), in the southwestern region of Paraguay.

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  • Norandino, Peru

    Cooperativa Norandino brings together three important coffee farmer groups with a long history in Peru.

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  • Nuevo Futuro, Colombia

    Nuevo Futuro Association was founded as a part of the prevention and eradication of illicit crops efforts in Cauca in 1995 with the support of GTZ (the German development agency) and the National Coffee Growers Association in the South of Cauca.

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  • Oro Verde, Peru

    In the 1980s, the co-op and surrounding communities in the remote Apurimac Valley were severely impacted by the social and political conflict occurring in Peru’s Ayacucho Province caused by drug trafficking and violence.

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  • San Fernando, Peru

    The farmer members of San Fernando are quechua and practice one of the core quechua values of ayni in their community. Ayni is the practice of work exchange and reciprocity between neighbors. It is often translated as “today for me, tomorrow for you” and is a system of work exchange practiced widely throughout quechua communities in the Andes.

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  • Sol y Café, Peru

    Sol y Café is a small farmer organization of coffee, cacao, and rice in Jaen, Cajamarca, Peru. The group was initially founded with support from Caritas Jaen and USAID in 2003. In 2005, Sol y Café began to work directly with Norandino Cooperative (another EE partner, formerly known as CEPICAFE) to sell their coffee into the specialty coffee market.

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Central America

  • Asociación Chajulense, Guatemala

    The Chajulense was founded in 1990 with the support of local priests. At its outset, the immediate goal of the association was “to support survival in the midst of war, in a climate of violence and profound mistrust, poverty, and injustice”.

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  • COCABO, Panama

    Founded in 1952, the Multi-service Cacao Co-operative of Bocatoreña (COCABO) was the first agricultural co-operative established in Panama. COCABO is an organization of 1,500 small-scale cacao farmers.

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  • COMSA, Honduras

    COMSA is a coffee producer society based in Marcala, La Paz, Honduras that proposes economic, social, and environmental objectives as a strategy to reduce poverty and to promote sustainable development.

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  • CONACADO, Dominican Republic

    CONACADO began as a development project in 1985 during a low in the global cocoa market, to study how cacao fermentation techniques could improve the quality of cacao production in the Dominican Republic.

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  • Las Colinas Cooperative, El Salvador

    The Las Colinas Cooperative in El Salvador is collectively farmed and managed on the site of an old coffee plantation.

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  • Manos Campesinas, Guatemala

    The Association of Small Coffee Producers, "Farmers' Hands" is an organization of small-scale coffee producers in the highlands of southwestern Guatemala.

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  • PRODECOOP, Nicaragua

    The relationship between Equal Exchange and the farmers in northern Nicaragua has survived war, embargo, revolution, counter-revolution, and epic hurricanes.

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Africa

  • Fruits of the Nile, Uganda

    In 1987, Fruits of the Nile (FON) was created to process the farmers’ fruit and export the dried fruit to foreign markets where farmers make considerably more money from the sales.

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  • Gebana Afrique, Burkina Faso

    Burkina Faso is one of the poorest countries in Africa, and in the world, and sales of this product provide badly needed income to the co-operatives’ members.

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  • Sidama Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union, Ethiopia

    The Sidama Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union (SCFCU) was formed in 2001 as a processing, marketing, and exporting union for 47 primary cooperatives located in Ethiopia’s Sidama Zone, in Southern Ethiopia.

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  • SOPACDI, Democratic Republic of Congo

    Equal Exchange began sourcing coffee from SOPACDI in 2011, through the Congo Coffee Project, a product that directly benefits the Panzi Hospital.

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  • Wupperthal Original Rooibos Co-operative, Cederberg Region, South Africa

    In 1998 against all odds, Wupperthal Original Rooibos Cooperative was established. Wupperthal is a democratically organized group of small-scale farmers who have grown Rooibos in South Africa for generations.

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Asia

  • Fair Trade Alliance Kerala, India

    In the mid-2000s, in southwestern India, the Fair Trade Alliance Kerala (FTAK) was formed to address the devastating impact that fluctuating market prices has had on the ability of small-scale producers to earn a stable and dignified livelihood.

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  • Mineral Springs Cooperative, Darjeeling, India

    The Mineral Springs Cooperative, also referred to as Sanjukta Vikas Cooperative, was one of the first small farming initiatives in the plantation controlled region of Darjeeling.

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  • PARC, West Bank

    PARC was founded in 1983 by agronomists and veterinarians in order to serve farmers in the agricultural sector.

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  • Potong Tea Garden, Darjeeling, India

    One example of TPI’s pioneering work is the development of Potong. Once a colonial plantation, the Potong Garden is now collectively run by its workers and paving a stronger, more democratic path forward for the community.

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  • SOFA and Bio Foods, Sri Lanka

    The Small Organic Farmers' Association (SOFA) project began in 1993 with the vision to establish a prosperous community living in harmony with the environment, and today there are over 1,600 small-scale landowner members.

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  • Tea Promoters India, Kolkatta, India

    Equal Exchange has worked with Tea Promoters of India (TPI) since 1998. TPI has been a pioneer in bringing environmental and social reform to the tea industry. TPI is a Darjeeling-based family operation that manages six organic, Fair Trade tea gardens.

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  • The Small Farmer Tea Project, Kerala, India

    The members of the Small Farmer’s Tea Project (SFTP) in Kerala, India are predominantly marginalized small producers and members of tribal groups who have suffered from social and economic injustice for generations. The goal of the SFTP is to bring its members economic growth and control.

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