Members of the Executive Board of the Productive and Sustainable Agrolocombia Initiative presented, on September 30, to partners and guests from the public and private sectors and unions results achieved by the Initiative and from the implementation of the sustainable landscapes program in the three prioritized states: Magdalena, Cesar, and Huila. For more than two hours, about forty participants remained connected and were able to learn about the advances in the territorial development of Colombia, based on the pillars of production, protection, and inclusion.
Vice-Minister of Agriculture, Juan Gonzalo Botero, talked about national priorities and strategies, including the Economic Reactivation Plan for the agriculture and livestock industry through the financing of projects in partnership with the states. “We consider healthy all the articulation of the plans of the Ministry with the programs and processes of Productive and Sustainable Agrocolombia so that, together, we can boost the development and productivity that we have in our Colombian fields,” he said.
In order to ensure the success of this strategy, the director of environmental and sectoral affairs of the Ministry of Environment, Alex Saer, highlighted the need to promote the transition to a circular economy model, capable of generating the development of productive chains with better use of natural resources.
During the event, they also presented projects and initiatives developed by the private sector in the three states, which have the support of IDH.
An example of this is the project for the transformation of dairy products that will be developed in the state of Cesar, in partnership with the companies Alquería, Nestlé and Yara, and the Agrarian Bank.
Carlos Enrique Cavelier, president of Alquería, pointed out that the conditions of access to credit are a limitation for the agricultural sector to sustainably scale projects, especially small farmers. “For this reason, we are grateful to the partners, including IDH, for their patience and dedication over the past three years, seeking resources for the implementation of this project possible,” he said.
“We are very happy to take part in this initiative that brings together the public and private sectors and is aligned with the purpose of our company, which is to build a more prosperous and more sustainable future while promoting the development of our communities”, said Carlos Lozano, vice president of supply at Nestlé.
A project will be implemented in the palm oil sector in partnership with Fedepalma to boost the productivity and sustainability of this production chain. “It makes us very happy to be part of this alliance with IDH because we share similar aspirations and values to strengthen the sustainable palm oil trade both in Colombia and globally,” said Andres Felipe Garcia Azuero, director of Sector Planning and Sustainable Development at Fedepalma.
Luker Chocolate president, Camilo Romero, reiterated the commitment and awareness with this vision that focuses on production, protection, and inclusion, as a triple impact strategy, applied to the Cocoa Effect project, developed in Huila, the potential of which can be expanded through the sustainable landscape initiative. “I also want to highlight IDH’s ability to bring together partners and raise resources from different European countries in favour of sustainable rural development in Colombia,” noted Romero.
Daniela Mariuzzo, director of IDH’s Sustainable Landscape Program in Latin America, spoke about the results of the meeting. “I am very proud to see so many advances in Colombia since we started this project three years ago. It was very important to learn that the Ministries of Agriculture and of Environment are committed to bringing solutions to farmers and it is now our challenge to further strengthen this joint collaboration in implementing the sustainable landscape program. I was also happy to see that the four companies that develop projects in partnership with IDH have the feeling and commitment with the vision of territorial belonging. This reinforces the commitment of all of us to production, protection, and inclusion to achieve the objectives of sustainable agriculture in Colombia,” she concluded.
Productive and Sustainable Agrolocombia Initiative
The purpose of the APS Initiative is to support and strengthen the cocoa, milk, meat, tropical fruits, and palm oil sectors through the transfer of knowledge, technical assistance, and co-financing of projects from a territorial perspective that in turn addresses the challenges and opportunities of agricultural development, deforestation, water use, social inclusion, governance, and infrastructure.