Fruandes Organic Farmers Meeting
Fruandes, our dried fruit and cane sugar partner in Colombia, shared the following with us.
This summer, Fruandes held the sixth organic farmers meeting in Ipiales, Nariño (Colombia). The On this occasion, Fruandes visited and shared some time with each of the members of the Biofruit Napoli association, a group of organic golden berries producers led by Albeiro Chamorro.
The focus of the meeting was 'The Farm as a Set of Good Practices'. Participants exchanged farming practices, in order to co-create and improve processes.
The agenda had four stages:
1. Good Practices
The 2-day meeting began with the participation of all association members. Each member shared their best practices and strategies in terms of quality and sourcing.
Together they identified the following good practices:
Loyalty and organizational commitment
Persistence and good project management
Good organizational management
Good logistics and traceability through effective communications
2. The Chagra Route
A Chagra is an Indigenous farming system. It's not only a collective activity wherein farmers and indigenous people produce their own food, but also a learning place where traditional beliefs are connected with organic production and divinity.
We visited the Chagra in the afternoon. The aim of this activity was to observe, and analyze how we can replicate these kinds of farms. Fruandes encourages farmers to grow healthy, nourishing foods for their own households.
3. Visit to the organic golden berry farms
The Fruandes community visited the farms of several Biofruit association members to know more about growing organic golden berries. First, we visited Hernando Chamorro’s farm, where we had a tour of his fields and learned about his composting practices. Next, we went to visit Albeiro Chamorro’s farm, and toured around the farm as he explained the golden berry picking process. Later, we visited Gildardo Rosero´s farm. He is in charge of raising the seedlings of the golden berries for all farmers belonging to the association. Lastly, we visited the farms of Jaime, Enrique and Leonardo López in the José María Hernández village, located in Pupiales. There we learned about other products made from golden berries.
4. Gathering and cultural exchanges
At the community center in the village of José María Hernández, we participated in the last activity of the meeting, much anticipated by participants. We described the organizational structure of Fruandes with two main objectives: 1) To know the roles of each on the Fruandes team; and 2) To replicate this model within each association to improve their organizational structure.