AGEXPORT’s Agriculture Sector, started working on improving the competitiveness of Guatemala’s small agriculture workers with help from the European Union’s AL-Invest 5.0 and “More Competitive Cooperatives and SMEs” projects. This led to the implementation of new technologies for agriculture, diversify crops, comply with international requirements, among other actions. All this, with the final objective of linking rural families with exporting firms.
In order to strengthen the capabilities of rural agriculture producers, we implemented a special methodology to organize business groups, where we identified producers of non-traditional agriculture products with the opportunity to be exported, such as: coffee, avocado, lime, vegetables, plantains, papayas, cardamom, heliconia, among others. At the moment, we have eight business groups organized, working to sell their products both on national and international markets; said Mr. Moises Merida, manager of AGEXPORT’s International Alliances department.
This methodology allows AGEXPORT to address common issues of small and medium enterprises and ease interaction among these companies, so that they can come up with their own solutions to common problems. This, in turn, will also raise their competitiveness and capabilities to export abroad. AGEXPORT, with help from the German program SEQUA, has developed different tools to support SMEs that wish to establish business groups and overcome obstacles on their pathway to sell to international markets.
Currently, we are implementing this methodology with companies in San Marcos, Suchitepequez, Santa Rosa, Alta Verapaz, Sololá, Quiche and Zacapa. We started with a diagnostics test on their common problems and then established a plan to try to overcome these difficulties. The plan was developed by themselves, with support from a special counselor; said Mr. Merida.
As part of the support given by AGEXPORT to companies on this program, its Agriculture Sector developed different on-the-field diagnostics tests to identify strengths and weaknesses both of their products and their organization, in order to identify needs and then offer technical assistance to improve their crops and raise both the quality and quantity produced.
Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, we have transformed the way we offer our support to these business groups. We are using different technological tools to continue our surveillance of their crops and we are also close to starting new experimental sites. With this, we will be able to continue offering accompaniment to these groups even with the current situation; said Mr. Carlos Salazar, manager of AGEXPORT’s Agriculture Sector.
For more information on this project, you can contact Mr. Eduardo Quinteros at (502) 2422-3408 or write an e-mail to email@example.com