General Objective: Contribute to poverty reduction and food & nutrition security in the ACP countries
• Contribute to the strengthening of inclusive, resilient, and sustainable value chains in the agri-food sector
• Contribute to improving, from a quantitative and qualitative point of view, the agri-food products’ offer for export and for local and regional markets
• Small producers and farmers
• Manufacturers and exporters of food for local and export markets
• Service providers involved in agri-food chains
• Governments & public institutions providing support to the agri-food value chains (50 ACP countries)
• Training & research institutions
Agricultural Sustainable Intensification in ACP countries - Market access - Food and Nutrition Security - Safe food for European & ACP consumers - Resilience capacity at all levels of the value chains- Inclusiveness of value chains, defending the interests and status of ACP small producers & SMEs
Europe - Africa - Caribbean - Pacific Liaison Committee - BelgiumLead applicant
COLEACP "Aid for trade, trade for aid, 40 years working for development" Created 40 years ago as an association of companies trading in exotic fruits and vegetables, COLEACP has evolved into an organisation that is supporting the development of sustainable agriculture in Africa-Caribbean-Pacific (ACP) countries. COLEACP became, ahead of its time, a public-private partnership (PPP), and is now a provider of multiple services to the international fruit and vegetable industry covering R&D, market intelligence, technical assistance, training, and advocacy, among others.
The Commission's Directorate-General for Development and Cooperation - EuropeAid - BelgiumInitiative partner
The Commission's Directorate-General for Development and Cooperation - EuropeAid is responsible for designing European development policy and delivering aid throughout the world. EuropeAid reinforces the ability of the EU to design state-of-the-art development policy for all developing countries, and enhances policy coherence for development while further improving implementation and delivery mechanisms. It also defines the future development policy drawing from the objectives of the EU's Green Paper on development policy and contributes to global challenges ahead. Development and Cooperation - EuropeAid plays a leading role in the international debate for development involving donors, international institutions, developing and emerging countries and non State actors.
Eastern Africa Farmers Federation - KenyaInitiative partner
EAFF is a non-political, non-profit and a democratic apex organisation of all Framers of Eastern Africa. Its role is to voice legitimate concerns and interests of farmers of the region with the aim of enhancing regional cohesiveness and social-economic status of the farmers. The Federation, apart from voicing views and demands of the farmers on crosscutting issues will also endeavour to promote regional integration of the farmers through trade and good neighbourliness.
African, Caribbean, Pacific Group of States - BelgiumInitiative partner
The African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP) is an organisation created by the Georgetown Agreement in 1975. It is composed of 79 African, Caribbean and Pacific states, with all of them, save Cuba, signatories to the Cotonou Agreement, also known as the "ACP-EC Partnership Agreement" which binds them to the European Union. There are 48 countries from Sub-Saharan Africa, 16 from the Caribbean and 15 from the Pacific. The ACP Group´s main objectives are: - sustainable development of its Member-States and their gradual integration into the global economy, which entails making poverty reduction a matter of priority and establishing a new, fairer, and more equitable world order; - coordination of the activities of the ACP Group in the framework of the implementation of ACP-EC Partnership Agreements; - consolidation of unity and solidarity among ACP States, as well as understanding among their peoples ; - establishment and consolidation of peace and stability in a free and democratic society.
Caribbean Farmers Network - St. VincentInitiative partner
The Caribbean Farmers Network (CaFAN), formed in 2004, is a regional network of Farmers' Associations and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) in the Caribbean. CaFAN's major focus is to foster linkages, training and information sharing amongst Caribbean farmers so that they are in a better position to respond to the key challenges facing the agricultural sector in the Caribbean. The Caribbean Farmers Network (CaFAN) was formed with the following objectives: - To enhance the ability of Caribbean farmers’ organisations to deliver services to members and also increase intra and extra regional trade; - To increase communication and exchange of ideas, experiences, resources, information and technology, between and among farmers associations in the Caribbean to impact positively on the competitiveness and sustainability of the agriculture sector; - To raise awareness, improve advocacy and networking to collectively influence decisions on strategic issues affecting regional agriculture and; - To mobilise resources for and on behalf of network members.
Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech (University of Liège) - BelgiumInitiative partner
At the cutting edge of sustainable development and eco-innovation, the Faculty of Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech is dedicated exclusively to agronomical sciences and biological engineering. The complete five-year program on offer at the Faculty trains bioengineers in the making. The agricultural bioengineering programme combines a range of exact, natural, economic and social sciences as well as techniques which require an understanding of agriculture where students learn to manage the bio-industries of tomorrow, use biotechnologies, agromaterials and biofuels, analyse water-, soil- and air-related problems, manage natural resources, purify, clean up, develop new drugs and new types of food, etc. Gembloux Agro-Bio Tech is a faculty on a human scale, open to the world, which has forged an international reputation thanks to the quality of its teaching and the excellence of its research over the last 150 years.
One billion people on this planet suffer from food insecurity. Effectiveness and resilience can be enhanced by promoting economic growth. Innovative partnerships encompassing the private sector, development agencies, civil society, governments and researchers are a promising approach to achieve this. Created 40 years ago as an association of companies trading in exotic fruit and vegetables, the Comité de Liaison Europe ACP (COLEACP) has evolved into a public private partnership which goal is to contribute to poverty alleviation in the Africa-Caribbean-Pacific (ACP) countries through the development of sustainable horticultural value chains. By up-scaling and disseminating the progress made in the export sector to also benefit production for local and regional markets, horticultural exports are used as a driving force in modernising food production in ACP countries, and thereby contribute to improving food security and nutrition, food import substitution and economic diversification.
Main innovation: the COLEACP “fair” training system.
• The training begins by carefully identifying the organisation’s capacity-building needs. To put the trainers in tune with the beneficiary’s projects & avoid duplication with other aid programmes
• The COLEACP Training Unit ensures the educational methods & tools used are best adapted based on the organisation’s aims, materials & skill levels
• COLEACP has worked to replace European expertise with ACP expertise as far as possible, to favour knowledge of the terrain, accessibility, cost control and capacity building
• The training forms part of a continuous, voluntary approach & may bear fruit only over the long term
• COLEACP strives to increase the reach and impact of its training through partnerships with other development stakeholders, a knowledge-sharing policy, and adaptation of its training tools and methods to other areas of intervention (mobile phone technology, partnerships with Orange and Syngenta Foundation).
An alarming amount of people has suffered again from food insecurity in ACP countries. Paradoxically, amongst the most affected population were small-scale farmers. Young farmers are the future of ACP agriculture. But a growing number of countries facing a crisis of vocations to the extent that young people prefer activities other than agriculture, less restrictive (climate, technology) and sometimes better paid or migrate to urban areas. By contributing to the modernization of agricultural practices and providing new opportunities for small producers in terms of competitiveness & incomes, the COLEACP & its partners have contributed to make the agricultural sector more attractive to younger generations. Women have also a major involvement in the process of economic & social development. An external evaluation carried out in 2013 estimated that gender was considered very satisfactory by COLEACP (team: 37% of women in managerial position, at beneficiary level: more women than men)
COLEACP has been contributing to food security in ACP countries for 13 years. The most recent evaluation (Nov 2013) finds the programme has already achieved the majority of its objectives: contributing to maintaining the level of horticultural exports from ACP countries to the EU and helping to professionalise the agro-industry in the countries concerned. According to the evaluation team, the methodological approach offers a model of best practice in technical cooperation, particularly regarding how beneficiaries’ needs are taken into account and the quality of capacity building. The report praises how the project addresses the beneficiaries’ needs, as reflected in the 96% satisfaction rate.
The evaluation report states that COLEACP is implementing the project effectively, for example in its development of local human resources (almost 90% experts contracted by COLEACP are local experts) and its consideration of the cultural, linguistic and gender context of the beneficiary countries.
COLEACP beneficiaries are all stakeholders of the ACP agrifood value chains:
• Small producers/land-holders and farmers of the below mentioned value chains (directly: 1 million small farmers)
• Producers, manufacturers and exporters of food for local and export markets
o Fruits and vegetables (local crops)
o Cocoa, Coffee
• Service providers involved in the above mentioned agrifood chains (trainers, consultants, and certification bodies (directly: 1000 experts)
• Public institutions providing support to the agrifood value chains (50 ACP countries)
• Training & research institutions
• European and ACP consumers
Main needs to which an answer was given :
• Compliance in the supply of ACP agricultural products to demand requirements
• Capacity building of all stakeholders in the ACP agricultural industry
• Safe food for local, regional and international consumers
• Poverty alleviation in ACP countries by modernizing the industry and maintaining the smallholders in the supply chain
COLEACP Structure: a team, a network
Around 40 staff in Brussels, 500 field experts, and over 300 member businesses representing 85% of ACP–EU horticultural trade.
COLEACP centers its activities in Brussels, where the European Commission and the ACP Secretariat are based, and where many public and private stakeholders in the field of development meet regularly.
COLEACP is also a network of 500 field experts, 80% of whom are from ACP countries. The goal has been to replace European consultants with ACP consultants as soon as possible, for obvious reasons of sustainability. This network includes agronomists, trainers, and marketing, certification and inspection specialists. Coordinated by the team in Brussels, these experts are sent out to businesses to assess their needs, train their staff, implement good agricultural practices and enforce a particular quality standard. They do all this using COLEACP-approved methodology and tools.
• Actions involving structurally and economically weak organizations (POs, NGOs , Gov. Agencies)
• Interface between public funds and constraints on the operational needs of the private sector
• The multiplicity of factors influencing the results makes impact assessments difficult
• The management of hundreds of personalised action plans is heavy
• Capacity building of the ACP professional organizations and public authorities
• Integrated approach of the agricultural supply chain
• Formula grant contract vs contract service (accountability for results more than means + Financing capacity of the association + benefit of human resources from the field)
• Participatory involvement of beneficiaries (cost sharing, demand driven)
• Centralized ‘all-ACP’ management to address difficulties faced by the various categories of beneficiaries using generic and affordable solutions
• Long term program (13 years’ experience)
• Nonprofit association = cost optimization
COLEACP impacts sustainably the environment through technical assistance set up in ACP companies & via collective trainings and trainings of trainers.
COLEACP supports the promotion, dissemination and adoption of "integrated production" (ICM), which is at the heart of support to businesses and consultants. Integrated production aims for the development of production systems based on better management of agro-ecosystems to reduce pollution from agricultural activities. The following aspects are included: the protection and soil conservation, integrated pest management against pests, waste management, water management, and biodiversity.
In 2013, 32 specific actions + training workshops (about 40 companies involved) have been achieved, concerning:
• Organic farming (diagnosis)
• Establishment of IPM system
• Energy audit
• Data collection for managing emissions of greenhouse
• Management of soil fertility and interpretation of soil analysis results
• Diagnosis of environmental practices
• Capacity building of private & public stakeholders in the ACP agricultural industry
• North-South, South-South transfer of knowledge
• ACP expertise (local experts, trainers of trainers and trainers)
• Cascading & revolving training system
• Public Private Partnerships, permanent dialogue between private & public sectors and with other international & local practitioners of development
• Sustainable tools (e-learning platform, social professional network…)
• Involvement of ACP universities to include agricultural training according to local requirements
Other initiatives connected to COLEACP activities:
• PPP4PPP (Public Private Partnership 4 People Planet Profit)
• Small Farmers Big Business platform
• Bilateral collaborations in emerging countries (Nigeria, Burundi, Rwanda)
• MoA with other practitioners of development (FAO, ITC etc)
• Multi stakeholders Platform of communication (EDDs 2013, EU-Africa Business forum) in the area of food and nutrition security.
The COLEACP communication system integrates:
• Technical communication: production and targeted dissemination of training tools and production guides
• Editorial com.: magazines, news, web
• Events com.: events in the ACP or the European Union in the agricultural sector or in development cooperation
• Corporate com.: design, development and production of information packs or paper, digital or multimedia support materials; press relations
Main methodological principles:
• Using most innovative and professional communication means in order to serve the objectives of COLEACP action and its European and ACP beneficiaries
• Promoting success stories and testimonials of beneficiaries
• Capacity building of ACP stakeholders
Innovative examples: E-learning, Social Professional network, PPPs, IT towards small farmers, Cooking shows involving ACP ambassadors
The COLEACP communication department was laureate by the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation in 2011 and by Europeaid in 2009