No 26

Mitsubishi Reinforces Commitment to Forester Families

April, 2016

Outstanding Ally

Mitsubishi Reinforces Commitment to Forester Families

Recently, the Japanese company Mitsubishi Corporation donated resources to the FNC to continue with the Forester Families Program, an initiative that has helped Colombian producers have a better future, away from illicit crops.


In addition to working for Colombian coffee growers’ welfare, the efficient and transparent implementation of social development projects in coffee regions is a work for which the Colombian Coffee Growers Federation (FNC) is recognized by both national and international cooperation entities.

Recently, the Japanese company Mitsubishi Corporation donated US$ 100,000 to the FNC to continue supporting the Forester Families Program, executed by the FNC in a joint initiative of the Colombian government, local authorities and Mitsubishi itself, among other actors.

This donation will enable to continue the implementation of the program, which started in 2008 and has facilitated the delivery of equipment and improved smallholder farmers’ infrastructure for ecological post-harvest processing of coffee.

It includes training and development of skills for local coffee growers through agricultural experts’ assistance and investments in ecological equipment for washing and drying coffee.

The Forester Families Program, which benefits 2,880 smallholder coffee farmers (in an area of 2,745 hectares), includes nine departments: Nariño, Huila, Cauca, Tolima, Magdalena, La Guajira, Norte de Santander, Boyacá and Santander. Between 2009 and 2014, the Program was implemented in Nariño, Huila, Cauca, Tolima, Magdalena and La Guajira.

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In July 2008, Mitsubishi Corporation signed a memorandum of understanding with the Government of Colombia and the FNC for this program, agreeing to support coffee growers in the department of Norte de Santander during 10 years with production infrastructure and training.

The support has been mainly focused on improving the capacity for pulping and drying locally grown coffee.

Under this program, in May 2015 Mitsubishi Corporation agreed to buy 550 70-kilo high-quality coffee bags (equivalent to 3 million cups) from 288 Norte de Santander coffee growers.

These beans were made available to consumers in Japan, where Colombian coffee is especially known for its wonderful aroma. This export of coffee produced by farmers from a specific region was a milestone.

Mitsubishi Corporation has expressed its commitment to continue supporting Colombian smallholder coffee farmers hand in hand with the Colombian government, the FNC and other relevant actors. This will contribute to Colombia’s efforts to alleviate poverty, eradicate illicit crops and foster the country’s development.

As a result of its transparency and effectiveness, the FNC has become a strategic partner for the implementation of social development programs and public-private partnerships that involve interagency efforts. This is so for initiatives funded both with domestic and international resources.

 

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