Below, in their own words, the president of Dhimsa Coffee Farmer Producer Company and a farmer associated with the FPC talk about how working with Tanager has increased their income and crop yields.
In India, as with the rest of the world, 2020 was a year of struggle and resilience. My country was under a government mandated lockdown for almost three months which negatively affected many industries, with the service and industrial sectors coming to an almost complete halt. However, the agriculture sector was the least affected by the pandemic, as the government deemed many farming activities to be vital. Now, post lockdown, while various industries are gradually opening but continue to struggle, agriculture is an economic bright spot and has experienced a growth rate of 3.4% during Q1 of 2021. Despite several hindrances like produce dumped for lack of buyers or crashing prices, farmers kept the process running and all major cities across the country continued to receive supplies of fresh vegetables, fruits, and milk throughout the lockdown.
Tanager is committed helping smallholder farmers in Andhra Pradesh access organized buyers through Collective Marketing. With grant funding support from the Walmart Foundation, Tanager is helping farmers streamline the selling of their produce to reduce reliance on private lenders.
On October 14th, between 8 and 9:30 am EST, Tanager, Mars Wrigley, and Symrise will present an interactive virtual Side Event during the 2020 Norman E. Borlaug International Symposium (hosted by the World Food Prize) focused on how to effectively and humbly manage projects with multi-stakeholder partnerships, using the award-winning Shubh Mint project as a case study.
In the latest round of Walmart Foundation grants, international nonprofit organization Tanager will receive more than $2.6 million to extend its successful Farmer Market Readiness Program and help farmers in Andhra Pradesh further expand their knowledge, resources and reach.
The living income analysis highlighted that farming households’ incomes are made up of various farm and off-farm activities. So, if one crop only represents 10% of a farming household’s income, even if we double incomes from that crop, it is only a small portion of that household’s income. There are additional opportunities to increase incomes through the other farm and off-farm activities. That analysis pointed to a more holistic way of thinking about working with farming households and communities – something we are calling the Whole Farm Approach
Tanager is committed to helping smallholder farmers access a nutritious and diverse diet. To that end, in India, Tanager is working with Self-Help Groups as part of the Shubh Mint project to encourage households to adopt the use of kitchen gardens to improve household nutrition, including advice on starting and managing their gardens and providing on-going support as the gardens are developed.. Currently, there are around 700 smallholder farmers who have raised kitchen gardens, growing 5 types of seasonal vegetables with the support of Tanager’s extension teams and Self-Help Group supervisors.
Covid-19 has significantly impacted the livelihoods of many smallholder farming communities in India. Disruptions in supply chains including logistics and transportation, limited access to agricultural inputs, and the inability to sell produce are been the biggest challenges that farmers face. Tanager, drawing upon its decades of experience in agricultural value chains is working on adapting strategies to support the small and marginal farmers across all its projects in India.
Deepening their work in the peanut and cashew value chains, Tanager and HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation (Helvetas) today announced the launch of a seven-month research project to study aflatoxin prevalence in the peanut and cashew value chains in northern Mozambique.
In India, Tanager partners with smallholder farmers, government entities, corporations, and foundations to help increase farmer income through robust training on Good Agricultural Practices, support for gender equality, strengthening of Farmer Producer Organizations, and streamlined access to markets. COVID-19 and the restrictions put in place by the government have brought new challenges to implementing this work. However, Tanager’s close connection to the communities where we work is helping us make progress on commitments without risking the safety of farmers or staff.