Description/achievement of initiative
Arborem has entered into agreement with Brazil's leading land reform group to help them raise their productivity and their incomes to lift smallholders above the poverty line. Without any official or authorized statistics, some estimates suggest that less than 1% of the 88 million hectares of redistributed land in Brazil, under the land reform movement of the last twenty five years, reaches the global median productivity benchmark for fully mechanized agricultural land. As has been proven in Africa with assistance from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation amongst many others, cashew plantations are an ideal way to achieve this objective
Arborem is initiating its project with 505 families on approximately 5,000 hectares in the State of Pernambuco. The goal is to help plant at least 100,000 hectares of cashew by 2020. For additional projects Arborem hopes to attract matching international like-minded supporters, in the area of sustainable social inclusion. Cashew (anacardium occidentale) comes from Brazil, which today is only the world's 7th largest exporter of cashew nuts. Partnering with Embrapa, Arborem will produce higher yielding trees seeking the best germplasm inside and outside Brazil. With better overall technology the return per hectare p.a. can increase fourfold. Arborem is establishing cooperatives and installing Hi-Tec processing plants in partnership with the landholders so that they can benefit from the entire value chain and the Fair Trade brand.
In its methodology, Arborem is working with the iGRF (instituto Genômico de Recursos Florestais). Arborem's parent group controls PETRA Energia, Latin America's largest privately held oil & gas company. The iGRF is a Brazilian genetic research institute focused on plant genomes and forestry resources. International collaboration with Arborem is coordinated by Charles Frewen a lifelong campaigner and supporter of the Brazilian Rainforest and Cerrado
Arrangements for Capacity-Building and Technology Transfer
Coordination mechanisms/governance structure
iGRF (Instituto Genômico de Recursos Florestais)