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Fintrac 30th Anniversary

2 MILLION

smallholder producers and agricultural entrepreneurs trained

10 MILLION

people, including children,
more food secure

3 BILLION

dollars leveraged in
agricultural sales

30 YEARS OF CELEBRATING SMALLHOLDERS

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1990 - 2000

OUR DNA

Our founding vision was that providing specialized agricultural expertise to rural sectors in low-income countries could be transformational. We began by analyzing and sharing export market opportunities with producer associations and government ministries, and working with them to develop codes of practice that supported smallholder suppliers to meet market grades and standards and prevent postharvest losses.

Our practical and cost-effective approach to market analysis was integrated by industry associations and government agencies in the Caribbean, Chad, India, Indonesia, Ghana, and Kenya into their market research units; and we helped local partners in Haiti, Jamaica, Mali, Sri Lanka, and Uganda design simple and low-cost entry point infrastructure in packing, grading, and handling that could be easily maintained and expanded locally.

2000 - 2010

OUR GAME CHANGERS

Incomes increased by 25 percent as a result of decreased postharvest losses and increased market knowledge, but by 400 percent when we incorporated production into technical assistance packages. Our technicians transferred good agricultural practices and basic technologies tailored to farmer and market needs, and worked with local, regional, and export buyers and processors to ensure smallholder supply was integrated into commercial value chains.

We determined measuring what matters was integral to our ethos as development practitioners supporting smallholders to bridge capacity gaps, so we designed an in-house monitoring & evaluation system (CIRIS) that tracked the impact of GAPs and technologies on yields, losses, sales, and incomes. CIRIS pinpointed what was and wasn’t working for our clients, and allowed us to adjust accordingly. When our donor-funded programs across El Salvador, Ethiopia, Honduras, Jamaica, Kenya, and Nepal ended in this decade, many of our clients re-invested increased profits in farms or other agribusinesses, further expanding sales and employment.

2010 - 2020

OUR EVOLUTION

As agricultural programs have increased in scope and outreach, Fintrac has increasingly accelerated our support to, and reliance on, local partners. We've also expanded our whole farm approach from fruits and vegetables to include staple crops, tree fruits, livestock, and poultry; embedded natural resource management and climate smart practices into production systems; integrated nutrition into extension activities; and focused on scaling technologies for smallholder access and affordability.

Our programs in Cambodia, Colombia, Ethiopia, Honduras, Kenya, Tanzania, and Zimbabwe continued to integrate smallholders into supply chains as we partnered with input suppliers, producer associations, aggregators, buyers, and government agencies to scale and deliver products and services. Our role has become more facilitative in transfer of GAPs as clients and former staff integrate extension into their own businesses, and we are increasingly supporting innovations in technologies, with an emphasis on local women-owned and youth-led enterprises. Household health and nutrition activities are now part of our agricultural extension model, and we’ve formalized our analytical practice, collaborating with stakeholders in 26 countries to assess enabling environment policies, and examine where and how development aid distorts local markets.

2020 & BEYOND

At the end of this year, we will be opening our online learning platform to the public for the first time. We hope by providing access to our suite of technical training materials and production guides honed over three decades, we can empower the next generation of development professionals, farmers, agribusinesses, and private sector partners to eradicate hunger and poverty. Stay tuned!

LESSONS LEARNED

As Fintrac celebrates its 30th anniversary, there have been a plethora of lessons learned. Our purpose in launching this series of educational campaigns is to capture and share them – along with our tools, products, and methodologies – so that others can adopt, adapt, or scale.

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30 YEARS OF EXPANDING OPPORTUNITIES

Farming as a Business

We start with what farmers know and support them in accelerating their agriculture and business practices. Our methodology addresses needs and opportunities not only on the farm, but along the entire value chain from input suppliers to exporters to policymakers, to boost and sustain commercial farm enterprises.

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Transferring Technologies

We transfer technical expertise – from basic knowledge to advanced technologies – that improve quality, productivity, sales, and have the benefit of being climate smart. We apply the same principles regardless of farm or business size, believing good practices translate into higher incomes for all clients.

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Integrating Interventions

We empower the whole family to take ownership of their economic potential by targeting youth enterprises, promoting agricultural education, and integrating healthy household practices into our core agricultural extension work to increase earning opportunities and improve overall well-being.

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30 YEARS OF COLLABORATIVE LEARNING

(IN THE WORDS OF OUR FIELD TEAMS)

Laying A Foundation

Over 30 years and more than 60 projects, we’ve defined and refined our implementation approach from start up to performance monitoring to ongoing staff training. Consistent and standardized program delivery helps maximize farmer impact.

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Technical Superpowers

While roles and responsibilities vary, our experienced teams identified several key characteristics that have fostered team cohesion and boosted program results: determination, innovation, and an unwavering commitment to our mission.

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Sharing Across Countries

We constantly tweak our approach based on the expertise of our staff, the data we collect and analyze, and the insights we gain across projects past and present; and we prioritize, and reward, knowledge sharing across countries and teams.

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