- Improve cultivation conditions, in particular water management, for the production of sugarcane, which is very water-consuming.
- Provide shade and wind protection to banana plantations.
- Strengthen local nutrition systems, and diversify farmers’ revenues through fruit production and sale.
- With the establishment of new nursery, strengthen the role of women in leading and managing the nursery.
“I am always confident carrying the name of PUR Projet and Alter Trade because I know the project has been a great help for the farmers producers. It’s very self-fulfiling to see to active participation and interest from farmers to the project.” – Joven Mosquera, technician
The island’s producers have been heavily impacted by the world sugar crisis in 1984, on top of two strong hurricanes, all of which having entailed a significant decrease in their revenues. Climate deregulations such as El Niño only add up to these difficulties.
Some tree planting projects were initiated by the groups of villagers themselves. Their initiative contributes to the rehabilitation of the environment, especially the maintenance of soil and water in the soil, on this island where sugar cane supplanted all the forests that were formerly present. It will also eventually enable the villagers to run collective the sustainable exploitation of timber and gain additional income out of it.
Recognized as a strong empowerment model for sugar cane and banana producers of the Philippines, Alter Trade corporation also develops along with PUR Projet a tree planting project with farmers, aiming at the development of a community and sustainable forestry. The agroforestry models is well adapted to the needs of small-scale sugarcane and banana producers. It brings many benefits: water supply, soil fertility, shade, wind protection, pest control,…
The holistic development dynamic initiated with the organic and fair trade cultures of sugar cane and bananas, created a particularly favorable context for community project development of reforestation and forest preservation. Local groups are very close, they already work actively on multiple shared projects, and share a strong vision of sustainable development of their village. Their life condition improved in the last 15 years thanks to sustainable development mechanisms such as organic agriculture and fair trade. They share a vision and a strong conviction that their development passes by sustainable practices of protection of their ecosystem and maintenance of the social and solidarity relationship within villages.
LocationNegros Island, Philippines
Agroforestry and reforestation
Local partnerAlter Trade Corporation
Participants160 Organic and fair trade farmers of sugar cane and bananas
Achievements100 119 planted trees
supply chainFruits and Vegetables , Sugar Cane
Alter Trade Corporation was created in 1987 in the Negros Island, Philippines, in which the sugar cane cultivation occupies 85% of the lands. More than 800 small sugar cane producers benefit from it; they received the lands thanks to an agrarian reform and cultivate them collectively. Alter Trade enables them to have a stable and decent income while they are in charge of transforming sugar thanks to their own mills and selling the product through direct exportation.
Alter Trade Corporation provides technical assistance to farmers on methods of organic production for sugarcane and bananas, but also on the development of vegetable gardens, rice farming, pig and chicken breeding,… and thus helps small farmers diversify their income and secure their food sovereignty. Agroforestry is part of this mission.
Participants are fair trade and organic farmers of sugarcane and bananas, members of the Alter Trade cooperative. Most of them are former sugarcane plantation workers who organized and lobbied to obtain land through agrarian reform. They own an average of 1 ha per person. However, as they have always been farming collectively, they formed farmers’ organizations and mainly continue to cultivate their cane fields collectively. Most of them are young and have been in school until the end of the primary – they have never traveled outside of Negros, even outside their region, except to go to Bacolod.