Farmers cooperative in Araku awarded ‘Community Micro Enterprise of the year’


Now in its ninth year, the Citi Micro Enterprise Awards program has been an avenue to highlight the dynamic enterprise development environment in India. This year, the awards include the best Community Micro Enterprise of the Year, the Best Rural Community Micro Enterprise, the Best Urban Community Micro Enterprise and the Most Innovative Community Enterprise, under the enterprise category. In addition, the special Innovative Livelihoods Enterprise Promoter award will honor the significant role played by organizations in nurturing and promoting micro enterprises.


The context:

This project is conducted in the Araku Valley, located in Andhra Pradesh (east of India) where the disappearance of forests and the extensive cultivation of bare soil resulted in a drop in soils fertility and yields.

It covers 250 villages of tribal communities, most marginalized; peasants cultivate food crops and coffee in full sun.


The project

Naandi Foundation has undertaken over the past ten years to support farmers in the area, organized in a “Small and Marginal Tribal Farmers’ Cooperative.” The Foundation intervened initially to provide support to marketing strategy and techniques of coffee growing. The process of improving farming techniques and primary processing has to be certified “organic” and “fair trade”, which significantly increased the income communities.

The social and environmental impact

The Foundation had planted 200 hectares until 2009.

LIVELIHOODS funding in 2010 and 2011 has planted 2,720 hectares of forest shade.

The project concerns the continuation of these coffee plantations under shade of forest, with the goal of 6,000 hectares over the next three years. Plantations belong to individual farmers on a secure tenure. 10 000 small coffee producers are involved in the project which will impact on 65,000 people. The impact expected by the farmers is a production of coffee, fruits and spices with improved yields. Predicting carbon storage in biomass above the ground is 1.1 million TeqCO2 for 20 years.

To learn more about the Araku project 

More about the Citi Micro Enterprise Awards

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