50-year-old Antonio Benedito Sucamela is a typical cashew farmer from the Mogovala District in the Nampula Province of Mozambique and one of 51 beneficiaries in his farmer group of the Olam Cashew Farmer Bonus Scheme.
For the 2018/2019 crop season, Antonio supplied Olam with approximately 3,999KG of raw cashew fetching him a sum of US$3,225, including a bonus payment of $129.
In terms of the difference this makes, Antonio says, “We have used the extra money to pay for school fees for our children”. In the past, he and his wife have also used it to re-invest in their farm or cover outstanding farm management expenses.
Four years ago, Olam’s field extension workers discovered many cashew farmers in Mozambique were unable to afford certain farm inputs and labour costs for their farms, that were critical to apply during specific periods of the crop calendar. If they weren’t, their crop suffered and so they found themselves trapped in a continuous cycle of low productivity and poor income. Since then, Olam has distributed a total of almost US$60,000 in farmer bonuses.
"The bonuses offered to the farmers can be spent at their discretion, but we do our part in encouraging them to use it towards farm practices which will boost their yields and subsequently their earnings at the end of the season” said Brenda Makona, Assistant Manager Sustainability, Olam Mozambique.