The sugarcane farmers of Guarambare, Paraguay formed La Asociación de Cañicultores Orgánicos de la Zona Central (ASOCASE) in 2002 in hopes of improving the living conditions of their agricultural community. ASOCASE became Fair Trade Certified™ in 2004. The small-scale family farmers favor traditional techniques, cultivating mainly organic sugar. Guarambare is located just 35 kilometers from the capital city of Asunción. This proximity brings both opportunities, such as access to cultural and educational resources, and challenges primarily because some workers choose to commute to the city for other jobs. As a result, the association and its members sometimes face a scarcity of workers in the region during harvest time. The success of the organization can be measured in the doubling of its membership since 2004, as well as in the twelvefold growth of its annual Fair Trade eligible production. Thanks to the process of collective negotiation, association members are receiving a better price for their sugarcane, and because of the production and sales of organic and Fair Trade sugarcane, a community of some 5,000 people have improved livelihoods.
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