Cotton is one of the major agricultural products in Brazil due to available natural resources suitable for high yielding. In 2019, Brazil exported 2.8 billion USD worth of cotton which accounts for 5.2% of global export. Therefore, cotton farming is getting more popular in Brazil with an estimated 1.65 million hectares2 that are currently being used in this industry. As the opportunities are surging, the amazon is losing natural resources due to lack of sustainable farming practices. Inadequate training and knowledge among the farmers about preserving the forest while harvesting cotton is leading to depleting natural resources.
Within the framework of the 3-year project, VEJA together with FARFARM will train 100 local farmers in the cultivation of organic cotton using and implementing agroforestry methods. Through the planned training, the farmers will receive knowledge in agroforestry, health and finance as well as in the certification process of organic cotton and they will be equipped with proper tools for the cultivation of the organic cotton.
In total, 44 tonnes of cotton lint will have been harvested by the end of the project. The organic cotton that will be produced as an outcome of the project activities will receive the “Organic Certification” by the Certification Association of the Biodynamic Institute (IBD3) and will comply with the IBD Organic Quality Standard. The farmers will receive the certification after 2 years of actively performing organic cultivating methods.
Furthermore, to ensure a sustainable and reliable source of income, VEJA will engage with the farmers in 3-year contract farming agreements that guarantee a 100% purchase certainty and a higher purchase price than the average price on the market.