Income Generation Continues for Local Food Producers with the Sale of 1,853 kg of Agricultural Products

La Loma, July 8, 2020

In the midst of the socioeconomic impacts Colombia is facing with the pandemic, a group of farmers from Agustin Codazzi, Becerril and La Jagua de Ibirico, in the Department of Cesar, received news that would have a positive impact on the well-being of their families and their surroundings. The “Local Supplier Development Project,” suspended in April with the declaration of the health emergency, was reactivated a few weeks ago. It has already received its first order for 1,853 kilos of agricultural products.

This project consists in developing a supply model that promotes and strengthens the productive initiatives of farmers in the three municipalities, so they can sell their fruits and vegetables to companies that serve the meals in Drummond’s cafeterias. This project is run in partnership with Compass Group S.A. and Cosecharte, the main customers of the products, and with Corporación Vital, the operator in charge of all of the activities with the suppliers.

“The overall perspective after reactivating the project is very positive. The producers are once again receiving significant income from the sale of their food products, something that can help reactivate the economy in the middle of the COVID-19 crisis,” stated Jaime Villarraga, President of Corporacion Vital. “Being able to sell my products at a fair price in the market motivates me to continue working in the farming sector,” added Jhon Jans Quiñonez, a local producer in Codazzi.

The increase in agricultural productivity and the growth in income for farmers is evident: from the time use of the food supply model was started in August 2019, more than 117 tons of food products have been purchased from 50 local producers, and close to $205 million pesos have been generated in direct payments.

“It is very important to Drummond Ltd. to have food providers who live in the area of influence. By financing this project, we contribute to the well-being of farmers and their families, who receive a fair income that is the fruit of their labor on their land. In addition, the producers have strengthened their technical skills, which makes them more competitive when looking for new customers,” indicated Juan Pablo Arteaga, Vice President of Sustainability at Drummond.

To guarantee quality standards, and strict compliance with biosafety protocols, the project’s technical team makes regular training and technical assistance visits to the producers’ farms. As a complementary activity, with support from the SENA, harvest and post-harvest training sessions have been organized, along with rural financial and economic education workshops, with the participation of some of the farmers involved.

“This project is part of Drummond Ltd.’s commitment to sustainable development, under the Comprehensive Development pillar of our Corporate Social Responsibility strategy. With it, we seek to promote and strengthen local skills and economic initiatives to create a prosperous future beyond mining,” concluded Juan Pablo Arteaga.