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FairFruit Guatemala Grupo CEIS

Guatemala

10 years' experience in trimmed and washed peas & beans from Guatemalan smallholders for high-end markets

FairFruit Guatemala is located in Antigua Guatemala and works with approximately 1500 smallholder farmers that are organized in farmer organizations (cooperatives and associations). The company provides technical assistance and training to these farmers, and pre-finances agricultural inputs such as seed, fertilizers and pesticides. In its packing plant the company employs up to 300 workers, mainly women. Vegetables are graded, trimmed, washed and packed for export. 

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Name Family Name, Function

Workers

  • 2011 : 257 182
  • 2012 : 295 210
  • 2013 : 297 228
  • 300
  • 200
  • 100
  • 0
  • 300
  • 200
  • 100
  • 0
Number
Low. sal. (€/month)
Year
  • Number of workers
  • Lowest salary (€/month)y

Farmers revenue

  • 2011 : 1144 1883
  • 2012 : 1350 2008
  • 2013 : 1529 3566
  • 1500
  • 1000
  • 500
  • 0
  • 2000
  • 1500
  • 1000
  • 500
  • 0
Number
Av. rev.
(€/season)
Year
  • Number of farmers
  • Average revenue (€)
Developments in 2013

Guatemalan farm Fairtrade USA certified

In September 2013, FairFruit Guatemala’s own 12ha nucleus farm received Fair Trade USA certification. Although 90% of the volume exported by FairFruit comes from smallholder groups, the farm is important for supply maintenance when weather conditions hamper smallholder production. The farm has also served as a centre for experimentation and extension. The Fairtrade premium is destined for a better housing’ project.

Continued support to smallholder farmers through NGO ADISAGUA

FairFruit Guatemala is increasing efforts to train and certify farmers through ADISAGUA, which offers a wide range of services in management support and institutional reinforcement. Collaboration with the Guatemalan Ministry of Economy and other donors has provided funding for the construction of 3 local processing facilities with 2 more following in 2014. ADISAGUA’s budget was $250.000 in 2013 of which $60.000 was funded by FairFruit Guatemala. 

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Name Family Name, Function

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Name Family Name, Function

Proportion of certified farmers keeps growing

So far 8 producer groups have succeeded in obtaining Fairtrade Labelling Organisation (FLO) certification, covering about 100ha. Farmer groups received in total $95.000 above conventional payments. The number of GLOBALG.A.P. certified farmers went up from 247 to 499 in 2014, covering about 120ha. A ‘better price’ policy was introduced for food safety certification.

Optimising margins

FairFruit Guatemala has been experimenting with new processing, packing and transporting protocols in order to improve product quality upon arrival. Improved temperature control and new packing protocols have made it possible to reduce the percentage of product graded out by clients, contributing directly to better sales margins.

Challenges for 2014 and beyond

Investment in capacity

A new round of investments in a flume washer, more cold storage and an infrastructural reorganisation of the production lines will lead to increased production capacity.



Boosting USA revenues

While sales to Europe demonstrate a healthy profitability, the sales to the USA - a natural market for Guatemala - struggle to generate the required margins. Renewed efforts, in collaboration with FairFruit International, are planned in order to improve marketing to the USA and to boost the profitability of the US sales programme.