ASOCASE - La Asociación de Cañicultores Organicos de la Zona Central
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.
There are more benefits and services available to us. The association prepared a demonstrative parcel on my farm, where they financed the planting of a new variety, and in return I agreed to provide 50 percent of the first year yield for seeds free of charge. ”
Through the association, we are now able to access medical and dental services, and when we need a tractor to help expand our crop, the association provide us with this as well. ”
An Optimistic Future
Future plans for the use of the Fair Trade premiums include fertilizer distribution, crop subsidies, tractor usage and maintenance, and procurement purchases of other machinery. ASOCASE also plans to launch a website for their cooperative in the future.
Farm Equipment and Fertilizer
ASOCASE used premium money to help subsidize farm equipment and purchase fertilizer.
Medical and Dental Care
Fair Trade premiums have helped members of ASOCASE and their families obtain subsidized medical and dental care.