Natural-Habitats
organic products grown in a sustainable habitat

Empowering Smallholder Farmers

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04 November 2014

environment, partnership, social reponsibility, farmers

Empowering Smallholder Farmers

Smallholder family owned farming is the most important form of farming in most developing countries. According to the Fairtrade Foundation 2013 more than 70% of world’s food is produced in smallholder farms across continents. It is the source of livelihood for many poor people living under the poverty line in the rural areas and feed half of the undernourished people of the world. Smallholders play a very important role in not only the food production but also in poverty reduction and rural development.

Smallholders and family farming can play a crucial role in organic farming and stewardship of biodiversity as it is built on the concept of multi-functionality and is based on the farm-based resources. Organic agriculture in smallholder farms can enhance productivity of the region at a low cost. It can make food available locally by using local technologies and manpower without damaging the environment. It means healthier people with healthy soil, focus is on both the community and the commodity.

In many parts of the world agricultural practices are undergoing structural changes. This change in the structure is due the susceptibility of the smallholders to various shortcomings; such as outbreak of pest and diseases, climate change, reduce in price premium and underdeveloped markets just to mention a few. Globalization of agriculture has exposed smallholders to lower prices and increase competition. Many smallholders are moving out of agriculture and there is a substantial urban migration. This structural change in organic farming sector could be detrimental to the growth of rural development and poverty reduction.

Organizations like IFOAM are working towards the better local and international policies, which can promote sustainable organic farming at the smallholder farms and businesses. Smallholder organic agriculture is an important tool in making rural and poor sector of the population more productive, profitable and resilient. To read more about IFOAM Principles and empowerment programs please click here .

Natural Habitats group has developed a vertically integrated palm oil supply chain, through which smallholders are able to access the world market. At the Natural habitats group we believe that all stakeholders of our business are a part of our family, the ‘ Familia Organica’. Familia Organica educate small farmers in organic farming methods to increase yield and ensure that the small farmers are paid a premium over the local prices so that they are benefited from their connections to the world market.

Empowerment is the part of our business core values, we focus on empowering smallholder farmers by ensuring good working conditions, guidance and fair price premiums. We encourage smallholder farmers to get involved in organic business and nature preservation, this is not only for their own good but also for the betterment of the society. To read more about our empowerment programs please click here .

 

Blog & News

Palm Oil Is Everywhere

Palm oil (Elaeis guineensis) originates from West Africa. Once planted, after 3-4 years’ palm oil trees start to producing its first fruits and will continue all year-round for up to 30 years. Oil Palm is high yielding; it produces more oil per hectare than any other major oil seed crop.

Did you know that half of your items in your house contain palm oil?
Palm oil is also the most widely consumed vegetable oil on the planet

farmers, social reponsibility, environment, organic

Why Farm Organically?

With a growing population, nearly 10 billion people by 2050, and an increasing demand for food, agriculture is placed under extreme pressure. We heavily rely on services that the industry provides to us, such as food, clothes, wood, and many others. Unfortunately, with biodiversity losses and deforestation practices that accompany modern agriculture, these services are currently at risk. Therefore, we must take actions to sustain biodiversity, soils and forests for the generations to come

social reponsibility, environment, farmers, organic

An Important Role of Intercropping in Modern Agriculture

Population of our planet is constantly growing. The threat of insufficient food supply in the near future encourages intensification of the search for more productive agricultural technics. At Natural Habitats, we believe that well-planned intercropping is one of the most effective and sustainable ways to increase agricultural productivity.

Intercropping, as well as other forms of multiple cropping, is an ancient method of intensive agriculture that involves cultivation of two or more crops simultaneously on the same field

environment, farmers

Mainstream Sustainable Palm Oil Production in Ecuador

Deforestation caused by many palm-oil producers, harming wildlife habitats, has been a widespread concern around the world. However, more and more palm oil is now being sourced sustainably with a help of the certification initiative promoted by a non-profit association Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) that aims to transform markets to make sustainable palm oil the norm. Natural Habitats as 100% organic and sustainable producer was certified with RSPO standard in 2013.

In May 2013, Natural Habitats in Ecuador (Exportsustent) together with Solidaridad and National Association of Oil Palm Growers (ANCUPA) developed a pioneering project Mainstream Sustainable Palm Oil Production in Ecuador

farmers, environment, partnership, social reponsibility

An Ongoing Education of Farmers

Natural Habitats believes in doing business in harmony with the environment. This is the reason for us to continuously encourage smallholder farmers in Ecuador and Sierra Leone into getting involved in organic and sustainable production of palm oil.

On a regular basis, we educate and train our smallholder farmers in nature preservation and organic farming practices for not only their own good but for the betterment of the society

farmers, partnership, social reponsibility

Fair Trade Explained

Today, we are surrounded by numerous certifications on the products we buy at supermarkets. It is getting more and more confusing to figure out what exactly most of them stand for. Some labels are self-explanatory and some are not. Fair for Life Social and FairTrade certification belongs to the second category. Therefore, most of the consumers do not even realize that while they purchase Fair for Life or FairTrade certified products they contribute to the empowerment of poor around the world

farmers, social reponsibility, environment

Why Healthy Palm Oil is not an Oxymoron

When people hear about palm oil the first thing that usually comes to their mind is heart disease. The logic is pretty simple: fifty per cent of the oil consists of saturated fat that supposed to be bad for the heart, therefore, palm oil causes heart disease. However, numerous studies continue to confirm that palm oil does not promote heart problems and, if anything, it protects against them

cooking, health

Sustaining Food Security

Pressure on the world’s food supply is constantly increasing due to population growth, changing diets and government policies promoting biofuels. Current estimates suggest that by 2050 the food demand will be twice what it was in 2005. Biotech companies have strongly promoted the idea that genetically engineered (GE) crops are the key to “feeding the world”. According to Environmental Working Group , recent studies show that this promise has fallen flat

environment, farmers, social reponsibility