Mr. Fikadu Belachew is a young smallholder dairy farmer in Wakene kebele, Debre Libanos District, Oromia region, in Ethiopia. His farm sits on one hectare of land on the main road from Addis Ababa to Bahir Dar. Mr. Belachew has five zero–grazed cross-bred dairy cows, producing an average of about 70 liters of milk a day, along with three heifers and two growing males.
In 1995, at the Fourth Conference on Women convened in Beijing, 50,000 men and women from around the world met to create a plan of action for women’s empowerment. As a little girl I watched the grainy footage of the conference from my parents’ living room floor, eating an after-school snack and thinking that it looked like an epic party.
In India, Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) and Farmer Producer Groups (FPGs) are important mechanisms for smallholder farmers to organize their efforts, receive valuable training, connect to buyers of their produce, reduce the influence of pernicious middlemen, and increase income. Tanager’s expertise in the support and growth of FPOs has helped tens of thousands of farmers improve their social and economic outcomes. However, as valuable as engagement with FPOs is for smallholder farmers, many of these organizations still face a persistent problem of gender-inequality – especially at the leadership level.
Malory Ríos is one of the 750 participants taking part in DIAGEO’s Learning for Life Program Phase 3, implemented by Tanager in Colombia. Tanager works with corporations and foundations around the world to co-create projects to improve social and economic outcomes. In 2015, DIAGEO Colombia and Tanager joined forces to develop job skills training and employment projects for at-risk young people in the cities of Barranquilla, Bogotá, Cali, and Medellín.
Today is National Farmers Day in India, an important time to reflect on the plight of the rural farmer and examine how Tanager is working to improve social and economic conditions in rural communities. In the Indian economy agricultural accounts for 18% of the country’s GDP, employing roughly 50% of the country’s workforce. In most of the cases farmers in India work less than an acre of land and rarely own more than 2 acres. These smallholder farmers face a unique set of challenges that Tanager works to address through our co-created projects in India. To understand how Tanager co-creates projects help to improve economic and social outcomes for these farmers, we must first understand the challenges of smallholder farming in India.
2019 was a year of incredible achievement and impact for the people, communities, and businesses that Tanager works with across the globe. With activities that positively impact over 105 thousand people worldwide, Tanager’s work won multiple awards, we collaborated on leading industry reports on sustainable agriculture, increased women’s market inclusion across the continent of Africa, improved nutrition outcomes for households, and continued to be an industry leader in the field of sustainable agriculture.
Rathalavath Vijalaxmi is a smallholder farmer from Dachakpally village in Telangana, India. She farms three acres of land along with her husband and three sons. As a young farmer cultivating vegetables like tomatoes, okra, beans, ridge gourds, and chili, Rathalavath often struggles to earn enough from selling her crops to make ends meet for her family. Prior to becoming involved in the Siddipet Horticulture Project, her farm produced an average yield of five to six metric tons.
Originally from Venezuela, Michelle migrated to Colombia in 2018 in search of better opportunities after being unable to continue with her studies in her home country. However, life in Bogotá came with challenges of its own. After more than 70 unsuccessful interviews, the only jobs she could find were of an informal nature.
Tanager and Mars presented a webinar on the design and implementation of the Shubh Mint Project for The Living Income Community of Practice, hosted by the Sustainable Food Lab.
Usha Devi is a mint farmer in Mubarkapur village in Zaidpur cluster of Barabanki District in India. She is also a project participant in the co-created Shubh Mint Project. For Usha, Shubh Mint provides more than an economic lifeline, it empowers her to improve a difficult living situation.