Last Wednesday the Inter-American Development Bank (BID), through its Multilateral Investment Fund (FOMIN), signed a disbursement agreement with Comercializadora Los Montones (Macadamia La Loma) and Banco ADOPEM to finance 200 small farmers employed in the cultivation of macadamia nuts.
During the event, which took place in the Center for Development and Industrial Competitiveness (PROINDUSTRIA), both organizations signed contracts giving macadamia nut producers access to a fund of DR $35 million through Banco ADOPEM. The producers will also receive technical support and advice on marketing their products from Macadamia La Loma.
The function was presided by the BID representative in the Dominican Republic, Flora Montealegre-Painter, the President of Banco ADOPEM, Mercedes Canalda de Beras-Goico, and Jesús Moreno, CEO of Comercializadora Los Montones, which distributes the Macadamia La Loma brand in its various formats. The director of PROINDUSTRIA, Alexandra Izquierdo, was also present.
“This initiative being signed today is part of a project launched by Comercializadora Los Montones to the BID to manage non-reimbursable funds from the Multilateral Investment Fund (FOMIN) through the Social Entrepreneurship Program (PES) for a sum of DR $9 million, plus an additional sum of DR $6 million from our company to provide technical support and sponsorship for macadamia nut producers. This is in addition to the DR $35 million that will be available to the farmers in the form of loans through Banco ADOPEM”, said Moreno.
This loan will support the production of macadamia nuts in the rural area of San José de las Matas, San José de Ocoa, Constanza, Bonao and Jarabacoa. Canalda de Beras Goico said that the aim of the project was to contribute to increasing the revenues of small producers and to implement a business and financial model (for productive finance) to diversify their production to include cultivation of walnuts and tap into high-value markets.
ADOPEM will release DR $20 million to provide long-term loans for purchasing supplies and managing the plantations; while the Los Montones company will provide technical assistance and marketing support for an amount of DR $15 million.
The project also aims to impart the knowledge the producers need to introduce the crop, implement a technological package for its overall management, provide permanent technical assistance and set up a responsible marketing scheme.
The Executive President of Banco ADOPEM reported her satisfaction in being able to help the small mountain farmers of Los Montones and other communities such as Jánico, Juncalito, Las Placetas, Las Lagunas, Mata Grande, Rincón de Piedra, Corocito, El Rubio, Pedregal and Sabaneta to encourage a sustainable business model which has a positive impact on natural resources and on the environment.
“We will set up contingency plans with these growers to respond to the risks associated with climate events, and we will develop a business vision with the participating producers by giving them the right tools for the responsible management of their enterprise”, said Canalda de Beras-Goico.
For her part Moreno noted that in addition to being a project for sustainable production, it has significant social and environmental features, as in addition to stabilizing the producers’ income it also encourages the capture of CO2 and protects areas for aquifer recovery, as well as achieving permanent tree cover.