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In Tough Conditions, This Nicaraguan Cooperative Blossoms

Posted by Rob Hefferon  |  Sep 26, 2019 1:56:37 PM

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Wiston Vílchez had barely turned 24 when he took over as general manager of the fledgling Flor de Dalia coffee cooperative in 2014. At the time, the cooperative consisted of a handful of families who sold their coffee to local brokers at rock-bottom prices. The brokers then sold the coffee on the international market with a huge mark-up—pocketing all the profit for themselves. 

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Topics: Mexico and Central America, Partnerships, Advisory Services, Stories of Impact, Livelihoods

How Investing in Young People Sets Coffee Businesses Up for Long-term Success

Posted by Rob Hefferon  |  Sep 24, 2019 12:27:38 PM

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Duban Gómez Alvarado grew up expecting to one day enter the family business: coffee farming. The Alvarados have worked the flourishing fields of western Colombia for generations—but, in recent years, climate change has imperiled their crop yields. Simultaneously, the global coffee price has plummeted below the cost of production, leaving many farmers without a livable income. “For many years, we have been coffee farmers in my family,” Duban says, “but I am not convinced at the prospect of continuing with my family’s work.”

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Topics: South America, Partnerships, Youth, Stories of Impact

How “Talent Partnerships” Unlock Business Growth in Rural Kenya

Posted by Will McAneny  |  Jun 11, 2019 3:00:00 PM

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Eighty kilometers outside of Nairobi, the Patel family’s macadamia factory buzzes with activity. In 2016, Mehul and Chirag Patel founded macadamia processing business Rainsun Nuts; every year since, they’ve doubled their sales. Between their office in Nairobi and their factory in the rural town of Sagana, they’ve created jobs for dozens of people—the majority of whom are women, and many of whom are under 35.

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Topics: East Africa, Partnerships, Advisory Services

To Adapt to a Changing Climate, Coffee Farmers Need Bold Allies

Posted by Abigail Bok  |  Apr 26, 2019 10:38:53 AM

Agronomists assist coffee farmers with a process called stumping

The saw makes a grinding sound as Albert, a young Ugandan agronomist, maneuvers it back and forth slowly, cutting through the trunk of the coffee tree. His colleague Ambrose stands next to him, bracing the tree and readying himself to carefully lower it to the ground once the trunk is severed. They repeat the process, one, two, three times for a single tree, cutting away three small trunks almost to the stump—until there’s just a single spindly-looking branch remaining.

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Topics: East Africa, Environment, Partnerships, Stories of Impact

Making the Case for Quality: Lessons from Root Capital and Intelligentsia’s First Joint Workshop

Posted by Alexandra Tuinstra  |  Aug 15, 2018 4:42:18 PM

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When actors across the coffee supply chain invest in quality, everyone benefits—from the farmer who earns better prices to the consumer who enjoys a better cup. Last month, we teamed up with specialty coffee pioneer Intelligentsia and coffee producers from across Colombia to learn how to make coffee better—for the people who drink it and those who grow it.

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Topics: Peace, South America, Partnerships, Stories of Impact

A Program That's a Win-Win for Rural Businesses and Young Talent

Posted by Kate Hyder  |  Jul 11, 2018 9:40:21 AM

Root Capital staff with members of a focus group in Kumasi, Ghana

This post originally appeared on the blog of the Rural and Agricultural Finance Learning Lab.

Each year, more than 10 million young people across Africa enter the job market, competing for just three million formal jobs. As the continent’s youth population swells steadily towards a projected total of 800 million by 2050, this demographic crisis will intensify even further.

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Topics: West Africa, Partnerships, Advisory Services, Youth