The Asociación de Pequeños Productores Orgánicos de Querecotillo (APOQ) was founded in 2002 as an alliance of small farmers in Peru’s northern coast bordering Ecuador. Starting with only 89 producers, its ranks have increased to an impressive 367 members across Querecotillo district in the Chira-Sullana valley. Seeking to improve their relationships with exporters and competitiveness on the international stage, APOQ sought and achieved Fair Trade certification in 2004. They began to produce and export organic certified bananas in 2006. The group’s goals are both social and economic: they wish to achieve a fully literate workforce with local access to medical attention and to cultivate their direct relationships with the organic Fair Trade banana buyers in the international market.
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