Jinotega & Matagalpa, Nicaragua
Solidaridad Latin America Nicaragua
Smallholder coffee farmers in Jinotega and Matagalpa are overcoming low productivity and crop loss by transitioning to agroforestry. Solidaridad and Acorn provided assistance.
This Plan Vivo-certified project run by Solidaridad in Nicaragua supports smallholder coffee farmers in the Jinotega and Matagalpa districts. It enables them to overcome low productivity and crop loss from climate change by transitioning from cultivated land to agroforestry. In addition to climate change mitigation, the agroforestry systems promoted by Solidaridad also serve as a climate change adaptation strategy in coffee landscapes. The integration of trees within these coffee systems enhances biodiversity, protects crops and topsoil from harsh weather conditions, and provides a financial and environmental safeguard for farmers when facing disease and pest outbreaks, floods, drought, or other climate-related disasters.
Solidaridad is an international civil society organization established in1969 with a long history of similar projects all over the world. With a staff of almost 1,000 people, Solidaridad is active in over 40 countries to create fair and sustainable supply chains. The farmer network of Solidaridad is ever-expanding on both a global scale as well as on a national scale — for example, in Nicaragua. The farmers located in the project area are experiencing a moderate level of poverty.
Coffee production in this region has been negatively impacted by the changing climate, resulting in an increase of pests and disease. Additionally, in recent years, production costs rose significantly. And while coffee prices are currently at a 10-year high, profits that farmers receive are limited by significantly increased production costs due to high agricultural input costs because of shortages in the COVID era, high labor costs, as well as the removal of previous tax exemptions on agricultural inputs.
As a result, farmers are barely able to break even. The threat of climate change and the impacts of disease outbreaks were the initial driving factors that sparked farmers’ interest in transitioning to agroforestry. However, it was the additional incentive of carbon finance that enabled farmers to commit to practicing long-term agroforestry in a period during which they experience high production costs, leading to low productivity, and low profits.
With the vast number of eligible farmers and farmland, the project is only at the beginning of its durable impact on the environment and its participants.
Full project documentation available upon request.