Name Exportaciones Colombianas Agropecuarias EXCOAGRO S.A.S
GGN 4059883247480
Country Colombia

Farm Profile

The Asociación de Productores del Río Mayo (Río Mayo Producers Association – Aspromayo) is a group of small Tahiti lime growers in a remote corner of the Department of Nariño, one of Columbia’s poorest regions and one with a history of violence and illegal crops.
Aspromayo is made up of small producers with an average of 1.15 hectares of limes, which represents the means of income and subsistence for the farming families.
Excoagro (a Columbian company set up as the strategic partner for product development in Columbia for OTC Organics) and OTC Organics (a Dutch distribution company specialized in certified organic produce for the European market) recognized Aspromayo’s export potential based on the quality of the limes produced and the project’s social profile, and therefore decided to tap this product’s potential for success on the European market, bolstered by its history of overcoming adversity and the improvement in the quality of life that it would represent for the farmers involved. As such, work began in the first half of 2017.
The three parties decided to join forces in the development of the Aspromayo Organic Tahiti Lime Exports project.
The three entities have shared the workload since day one:
OTC Organics, as the commercial distribution partner for the product in Europe, steers the project to satisfy the market requirements in terms of quality, size, and certifications, while fighting for fair pay for the farmers.
Excoagro provides two experts working full-time on the project, offering the farmers support in the implementation and certification processes, in addition to a periodical visit from a citrus specialist aimed at increasing production volumes.
Aspromayo contributes the dedication to the day-to-day farming efforts with an aim to obtaining the certifications and a better quality and quantity of crops.

One of the goals of this project was to obtain GLOBALG.A.P. certification, which proved possible for 22 producers in January 2018. The next goal is to recertify those 22 producers in accordance with GLOBALG.A.P. and GRASP along with another 35 additional producers in January 2019.

 

Achievements

– In a period of 13 months, we have exported 400 metric tons of limes to Europe, supplying premium supermarkets in Germany, Sweden, Denmark, Belgium, and the Netherlands. This was made possible by obtaining the GLOBALG.A.P. certificate, as these supermarkets require this certification as a guarantee for the produce.

– The average income per kilogram of limes for the farmers has increased by 450%, permitting improvement in the quality of life of the families and the community as a whole.
– The GLOBALG.A.P. certifications obtained, Organica, and the product’s type of target market have changed the producers’ way of working and understanding their activities, bringing more structure and organization into their daily activities, and thereby minimizing the direct risks associated with the work for them and their families.
– Thanks to the conscientious work of the farmers and the two experts supporting the certification process, there is now a completely documented and correct system of records of the farms and operations – traceability, which has been praised by the auditors during inspections.
– The project has demonstrated that the GLOBALG.A.P. certification is not just for large farms or agriculturists with considerable financial capacities and a high level of education, it is a standard which is accessible to every farmer who wishes to do things properly, in a documented and structured manner. Furthermore, it has shattered the myth that farms need to be luxurious, expensive complexes out of the reach of farmers of little means.