Philippine coconut farmers are among the most impoverished farmers due to the low sales of their coconuts. Through this coconut processing and community development project, FARMCOOP aims to improve the livelihood of 1000 organic coconut farmers, including women and indigenous farmers in Mindanao, Philippines, and convert conventional farms to organic. Since 1997, FARMCOOP has assisted over 6000 small family farmers on land rights, fair market contracts, organic farming, and market access.
Mindanao's indigenous and local coconut farmers are among the most impoverished farmers, earning only $5 a day. Many raise livestock and other crops to augment their income to make ends meet, but their farm income is not enough. Despite the processing of coconuts into food, industrial and pharmaceutical products, the farmers do not benefit from the value addition of their products. They remain poor because their coconuts are bought at a very low price.
FARMCOOP worked with organic coconut small farming cooperatives to develop the organic coconut processing project. FARMCOOP's production and trading arm will buy the farmers' coconuts at a higher price and process them into various products, and least 30% of the net profits of the processed products will be shared with farmers. The rest of the proceeds will be used for community development. Funds raised will build a processing facility, hire staff, and purchase a truck to haul coconuts.
Over 10,000 small coconut local and indigenous farmers with 4,500 women farmers will benefit from scaling up of this project. The long-term economic viability of organic small family farm-to-market development will encourage more small family farmers to transition to organic practices.Organic farming livelihood and land stewardship will strengthen sustainability. And overall, organic diversified farming will improve the health of the family farming communities and restore watersheds in Mindanao.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).