In the Santa Bárbara region in Honduras, the AtSource+ farmers are members of the community that is part of the so-called coffee route. It belongs to the regions that produce the best coffee in the country. The region is characterized by having fertile and nutrient-rich soils. Since coffee is grown at higher altitudes and lower temperatures, it produces a slower maturing fruit and a denser bean.
ofi has been working with this cluster of 238 farmers since 2016 as part of the H.E.L.P. (Honduras Education Life Project) project. It’s a partnership with a large European coffee roaster working to improve farm economic efficiency and farmer incomes. Training and coaching on GAP (Good Agricultural Practices), the ofi Supplier Code, and soil improvement practices are tailored to the needs of each farmer. Farmers are also supported with access to fertilizer credit and solar dryers. Together, these efforts have contributed to an average yield increase of almost 80%*.
"I've been working with project technicians from the HELP Project since 2017. They helped me with pruning practices, wastewater management, and we also have grey water filters now". Edin Joel Barrientos, coffee farmer in Naranjo, Atima region.
Having six years of consecutive data available on AtSource has helped shape the farmer segmentation approach and the way the programs are run. For example, if a farmer isn’t producing enough to meet the minimum capacity requirements of a solar dryer, then ofi’s agronomists focus on developing demo plots to teach farmers on yield improvement techniques like proper pruning. Progress is tracked against AtSource+ metrics on the dashboard.
ofi's teams on the ground put in a lot of effort to gather the data year-round. But the outcomes and impact of the segmentation approach makes it easier to understand the importance of having accurate and true data on initial baselines and progress.
"Overall, reaching this milestone of having 6 years of data has not been an easy task but it is one worth recognizing the effort of all stakeholders involved." Stefannie Corea, branch manager ofi coffee in Honduras.
* Yield improved from 702 kg/ha in 2016 to 1,260 kg/ha in 2021