LDN Fund and LDN TAF Case Study




Coffee and cocoa agroforestry

Business model

The project goal is to finance the transition to sustainable land use by restoring old coffee farms and establishing new coffee/cacao agroforestry systems on degraded land. Smallholders receive inputs (seedlings etc.) to renovate/establish new plots. The business model further strengthens farmer resilience through income diversification (honey, cocoa, timber) and carbon credits. It also strengthens the cooperative and generates added value for producers by investing in supply chain infrastructure such as collection centers, a biofertilizer plant, and a coffee processing mill. The project also aims at contributing to the conservation of around 70.000 ha of forest in the buffer zone of the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta National Park.


The LDN Fund invested in Urapi Sustainable Land Use, managed by ECOTIERRA (Canada). After the Café Selva Norte project in Peru, RioSierra is the second project approved by Urapi’s Investment Committee after almost three years of co-design and consultation with the local partner, Red Ecolsierra. URAPI’s investment in this project will be approximately 8,6 million USD over 13 years.

Technical assistance

  • Gain better understanding of the business case for planting timber species, specifically in the ecological conditions of the region and local market, in order to ensure the right varieties are integrated in the agroforestry system.
  • Optimize producer revenues by developing understanding of the honey value chain and business case for integration on farms, specifically of the market for honey, material needed for processing, storage equipment, and on potential to create opportunities for women.
  • Optimize producer revenues by gaining insights in cocoa market dynamics in niche markets, taking into account specific characteristics from the Sierra Nevada region.
  • Accelerate the identification of potential conservation partners in the region and evaluation of land available to achieve the 70.000 ha targeted for conservation.
  • Collect farm-level data on the 400 already engaged producers to allow for better project management. Data will include the number of hectares they could bring into conservation, agroforestry systems and apiculture as well as data that will be used to establish the LDN and carbon finance baseline.
  • Support to develop a biodiversity monitoring plan and establish the biodiversity Learnings from developing biodiversity monitoring plans for complex projects, like Urapi’s, will be shared through a knowledge product that will become publicly available.
  • Support to develop the project description document and project monitoring plan necessary to obtain Sustainable Development Verified Impact (SD VISta) certification.

Projected impact

  • 4,500 ha

    of land restoration

  • 1,500

    farmers engaged of which 20% are women

  • 1,300,000

    CO2eq sequestered

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