Project description / objective
Increase food availability and reinforce incomes of small-scale farmers through improved competitiveness of the coconut sector through better regional integration and improved production performance.
Market system focus
To revitalise the coconut industry in the Caribbean, ITC, CARDI and its partners has been working with the Alliances for Action (A4A) approach to facilitate alliances among value chain operators and support institutions at every step of the process.
The project has helped 11 Caribbean countries and associated value chain operators (family farmers, MSMEs, processors, exporters) to achieve higher levels of economic and agricultural productivity by revitalising and developing the Coconut Industry (directly reaching 2,040 farmers/SMEs). By promoting and facilitating technical expertise on production, processing, commercialisation and R&D of coconuts and coconut products, CARDI and ITC have enabled enhanced intensification of production, improved market awareness and linkages and sector wide public-private partnerships.
Improved value chain coordination
Improved governance through the establishment of National Stakeholder Platforms (NSPs) representing all stages of the value chain to:
- facilitate dialogue and collaboration
- encourage collective problem identification
- improve the coconut sector performance through negotiation and problems solving
Connecting local, national and regional stakeholders through numerous regional workshops and training to promote an intra-regional exchange of knowledge and experiences.
The project has resulted in a Regional Stakeholder Platform serving as a coordinating mechanism for the advancement of regional policy. It acts as an umbrella, steering the various initiatives that aim to develop the Coconut industry in the Caribbean, through national mechanisms like the National Stakeholder Platforms (NSPs).
Evidence-based policy and action put in place as a result of:
- value chain analysis
- farmer characterisation surveys
- cost-benefit analysis
Activities to improve access to market information and advisory services, and to generate new business opportunities particularly in value added activities, on:
- good agricultural practices
Improved product / service quality
Marked-led de-risking of investment by implementing support service packages for lead farmers and agro-MSMEs in:
- business training
- good agricultural practices in inter-cropping
- pest management
- coconut production development
- value addition
- food safety
- linkages to market
Improved input supply
Reinforcement of input supply through the dissemination of good quality planting materials, with targeted technical assistance, especially in lead farmers’ sites.
The project has also promoted exchanges with regional and international institutions to source superior plant germplasm, better suited for the Caribbean region.
Setting up alliances by establishing long-term relationships between producers, processors and buyers for the development, commercialisationn and provision of support service packages. This aids risk management and facilitates networks that provide needed technical expertise and capacity building - and that target catalytical investment to address systemic challenges.
In partnership with SAFIN and the Public Private Alliance partners, the project is exchanging knowledge and information on financial instruments available in agri-finance. The aim is to design and adapt instruments that can respond to the needs of value chain operators in the coconut industry - and to unlock inclusive productive and commercial alliances.
Notable results (systemic change, poverty impact)
Four years into implementation, the project’s results are visible at three levels: investment, network creation, and technical capacity and training:
- 2,041 farmers and 474 extension officers trained on nursery management, pest management, crop production, processing, trade, finance and group dynamics.
- $40 million investment pledged in the Caribbean coconut Industry.
- 5,000 farmers sourcing planting material from 28 supported seedling nurseries.
- 11 national stakeholder platforms represented by more than 200 public and private representatives across the region.
- 48 institutions have better support services and a business-enabled environment for small-scale farmers and businesses.
- Revision of regional standard for packaged natural coconut water.
- Transfer of knowledge and improvements in technical cooperation among numerous regional and international partners such as CICY, CIRAD, EMBRAPA, India, Sri Lanka and the Philippines.
[updated July 2019]