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Impact Report: Cooperativa Agricola Chinantlan

By Gail Batutis 

In Chi­nan­dega, Nicaragua, the har­vest has come in. As a recip­i­ent of a grant from the Social Enter­prise Insti­tute, the Chi­nant­lan Agri­cul­tural Coop­er­a­tive and its 40 small farm­ers can cel­e­brate the rewards of their hard work – bushels of Jamaica rose and papaya, which will be sold to both local con­sumers and nation­ally, through con­tacts in Managua.

The Chi­nant­lan Agri­cul­tural Coop­er­a­tive was iden­ti­fied as a high impact entity the was  recip­i­ent of a $10,000 grant pro­vided by the Barker-Johst Foun­da­tion in 2012. 

Unfor­tu­nately, due to a high rain­fall in the win­ter sea­son, a fun­gus caused by too much humid­ity affected a por­tion of the farmer’s plants – about 1/20th of Jamaica rose, and twice that of the papaya.

Over­all, how­ever, the farm­ers were able to keep it at bay. The sea­sonal har­vest was a boon for local work­ers – 800 peo­ple were hired to pick and dehy­drate the Jamaica rose, and another 60 more helped with the papaya. As this sea­son fin­ishes up, the farm­ers are now look­ing for­ward to the next plant­ing sea­son, due to start in February.