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 was founded in 1989 in the midst of a severe crisis in Mexico's coffee industry. Originally formed through the efforts of more than 7,400 small coffee producers, today CEPCO is the largest association of small coffee producers in Oaxaca.

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  • Formed in 1994, Campesinos Ecológicos de la Sierra Madre de Chiapas (CESMACH) is a coffee co-operative in the southern highlands of Chiapas, Mexico.

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  • Name: Comunidades Indígenas de la region de Simojovel de Allende (CIRSA) 
    Location: Chiapas, Mexico 
    # of Producers: 600
    Founded: 1992
    Certifications: Organic, Fair Trade, SPP

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  • 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 (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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  • 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

  • Initially funded by the United Nation's program to promote cacao cultivation as an alternative to growing coca leaves, ACOPAGRO is now an established exporter of quality cacao.

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

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  • 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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  • Cooperativa Norandino is an association of small-scale coffee producers in northern Peru. The 90 grassroots organizations with more than 6,600 producers, located on the western slopes of the Andes Mountains in Piura.

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  • 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 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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  • 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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  • “Like Equal Exchange, we want to improve the lives of our small farmer members,” said Hildebrando Cárdenas Salazar, general manager of Oro Verde. The co-op was founded in 1999 with 56 members, and now there are 1,200 members.

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Central America

  • 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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  • Name: Café Orgánico Marcala S.A.

    Location: Marcala, La Paz, Honduras

    Number of Producers: 850 and growing

    Founded: 2001, with 49 farmers

    Certifications: Organic, Fair Trade, SPP

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  • The National Confederation of Dominican Cacao Producers (CONACADO) is an organization of small-scale cacao producers in the Dominican Republic.

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  • Name: Las Colinas Co-operative

    Location: Tacuba, Ahuachapán, El Salvador

    Number of Producers: 89 members

    Founded: 1980

    Certifications: Organic, Fair for Life, SPP

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  • 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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  • 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

Asia

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

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  • 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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  • 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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  • 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 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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