Helping over 100.000 farmers — and counting

With our recent onboarding of 37.000 farmers in Zambia, we're now helping 108.000 farmers around the world to transition to agroforestry and combat climate change. Find out all about our team members' trip to Zambia and experiences here.

For those who are new to Acorn, our mission is a straightforward one. By empowering smallholder farmers in developing countries to adopt agroforestry (planting trees on their land), we ensure they're more resilient when it comes to climate change, and actively combat it.

The trees they plant absorb carbon from the atmosphere, which can be measured and sold as carbon credits to responsible corporate organizations looking to offset their unavoidable carbon emissions. And with 80% of the sale price flowing back to the farmer, their livelihood sees a marked improvement as well.

But while we're often preaching the power of starting small, sometimes we see big leaps as well. In Zambia, for example, where we recently managed to hit 108.000 Acorn-aligned farmers — a jump of 37.000 new participants!

Zambia: a rich soil for improvement 

Zambia, a country in southern Africa, relies on smallholder farmers for much of its food supply. These smallholder farmers (many of whom are women) struggle to keep their farms afloat, with the seeds they plant washed away by floods, torrential rain, and other natural disasters — direct consequences of climate change.

Reaching these smallholder farmers is easier said than done and motivating them to transition to agroforestry is a step further still. Fortunately, we managed to align our mission with various Zambia-based initiatives to improve the lives of the country's smallholder farmers together.

Getting further together 

In Zambia, we collaborated with a number of stakeholders to reach more farmers. One such stakeholder is the Zambia Industrial Commercial Bank (ZICB). With many agricultural businesses in its portfolio, they make for an ideal partner to broaden our impact in Zambia.

Similarly, COMACO (or Community Markets for Conservation) is a social enterprise in Zambia that focuses on both wildlife conservation and farmer welfare. With a mission so closely related to ours, it's no surprise that our collaboration has been a fruitful one.

See to believe 

A Rabobank delegation led by Managing Board Member Ms. Janine Vos, joined by Rabo Foundation, travelled to Zambia. The goal of the trip was to witness just how an Acorn project is operationalized and the impact it brings smallholder farmers. The visits included various farms of smallholders that joined COMACO and One Acre Fund projects in Zambia.

The field visits provided an opportunity to share new technological features that Acorn has developed. During the community meetings of farmers, Acorn showed their own plots of land which were searchable and viewable online. This caused a lot of excitement from the farmers.

Making our activities tangible to Acorn team members, Rabo Foundation representatives, and farmers alike was an emotional moment for everyone. Acorn is more than a seed of something good right now: it's already flourishing and doing its part to grow a better world together.

Curious about our projects in Zambia? Check out COMACO its project page for more information and images. Next to COMACO, we are working with One Acre Fund to set up new agroforestry projects in Zambia.

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Do you want to know more about Acorn's Carbon Removal Units; starting up an agroforestry project with us; or anything else? Let's connect. Please drop us a line at or fill in our contact form and we will be in touch shortly.

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Rabobank Acorn, lead by Rabobank Managing Board Member Ms. Janine Vos, undertakes a field visit in Chipata with our local partner COMACO to engage in meaningful discussions with farmers at a Project Council. The community meetings were an opportunity to discuss sustainable farming practices and the benefits of agroforestry for better crop yield.

Ms. Janine Vos gets agroforestry insights first-hand from lead farmers such as Eleonoret (left) and Silikee (right).

Meet our people

Martine JansenHead of PartnershipsLinkedIn
Jasper SnellenAccount ManagerLinkedIn
Hanna Choa YuHead of Government RelationsLinkedIn
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