Francisco is an organic sesame farmer in the Leon department of Nicaragua. Smallholder farming is a demanding and unstable livelihood full of long days of manual labor and long seasons working towards a harvest. Francisco struggled to make ends meet, with small margins of profit on his crops.
Our partner, Coproexnic, encouraged Francisco to convert his farm to organic so that he could sell his crops for higher prices. Many of the farmers near him have not converted their farms to organic because it is more time consuming to cultivate with natural pest control and manually cut out weeds. Organic farming is harder, as Francisco says, but he credits Coproexnic with guiding him through every step of the transition. They even helped him earn his organic certification.
Coproexnic provides international market access to smallholder farmers in Nicaragua who grow sesame, peanuts and other crops. They also partner with six small cooperatives that provide financing and technical assistance to these smallholder farmers.
Global Partnerships invested in Coproexnic as part of our Smallholder Farmer Market Access investment initiative. Our investments in this initiative aim to connect farmers like Francisco to larger organizations that will equip them with the economic resources and knowledge they need to thrive.
With Coproexnic, Francisco’s organic sesame can now be found in tahini products sold in supermarkets throughout the United States.
Francisco has become an ambassador for organic farming in his community. He is proud to be blazing a trail for other farmers to adopt organic farming practices.