Fairtrade Asia Pacific Quarter 1 report, 2017

summary

The beginning of 2017 has seen a flurry of activities at NAPP with 70 visits and 54 trainings conducted where 1465 people participated covering 191 Producer Organizations. 37% of the participants were women. Our staff also participated in 11 advocacy & partnerships related events across the region. This quarter has also seen several newly certified producer organizations for tea, cocoa, seed cotton, nuts, grapes and sportsballs. NAPP representation at Nuremberg, participation in the Seed Festival 2017, the launch of ‘Notes from the field’ and product based newsletters were other key highlights from this quarter.

Advocacy & PARTNERSHIPS

  • NAPP participated in Fairtrade Africa's Ways of Working in Nairobi. Apart from being a learning opportunity for NAPP on how FTA has been building relationships with stakeholders, the workshop also helped in building closer ties with Max Havelaar Switzerland. Max Havelaar has expressed interest for collaborating in NAPP's rice and fruit projects.
  • Collaboration with Ministry of Plantation Industries, Sri Lanka: Meeting was held with the Director of Plantation Management Monitoring Division from the Ministry of Plantation Industries to plan for the launch of 'Productivity and Quality Improvement pilot' in Strathspey estate.
  • We Effect Workshop, Philippines: NAPP representative participated in this workshop which was focused on country program development of We Effect in the Philippines.
  • Meeting with UKM centre from Syiah Kuala University, Indonesia: This meeting was to explore the possibility of collaboration on training related to finance and accounting for the producers.
  • Fairfield Conference on Ethical Trade, New Zealand: Participated in the conference and presented on Fairtrade’s ethical approach to the development of ethical supply chains, with a focus on Fairtrade ANZ’s work in the Pacific.
  • Fairtrade study finding workshop with Traidcraft Exchange: Fairtrade Asia Pacific, in association with Traidcraft Exchange, conducted a workshop to share findings of a study that evaluated the potential benefits of Fairtrade to farmers in Bangladesh. Various stakeholders and iNGOs such as Christian Aid, Catholic Relief Services, and AID Foundation participated in it. Fairtrade Asia Pacific leveraged its partnership with Traidcraft Exchange to commission a study to understand the agricultural landscape in Bangladesh vis-à-vis Fairtrade.
Fairtrade study finding workshop, Dhaka
  • Meeting was held with Govt. officials of Meghalaya from Meghalaya Insititute of Entrepreneurship with the objective of promoting products such as Honey, Spices and Tea as Fairtrade products. The demand for these products due to their medicinal properties is increasing in the international markets.
  • Consultation with Ministry of Agriculture and Water resources, Uzbekistan on the draft laws for Organic agriculture.
  • Presentation at a workshop convened by the Department of Export Agriculture, Sri Lanka: NAPP got an opportunity to give an overview of Fairtrade system and certification at a workshop on “Green Ecological Villages concept – Organic & Fairtrade certification” which was convened by the Department of Export Agriculture. A large group of officials and farmers of the Business Counseling Unit of the Department of Export Agriculture attended the workshop.
  • Meeting with the Tea commissioner for improving Fairtrade Tea sales, Sri Lanka: Various strategies and options for improving Fairtrade tea sales were explored in this meeting as a joint effort.
  • NAPP has been introduced to the membership of Organic and Fairtrade Cotton Secretariat & participated actively in the cotton policy review for the state Government of Madhya Pradesh in India.

GOvernance

  • Cotton Network Meeting: The event was a good opportunity for producers to gather at one platform and exchange ideas on innovative practices in different areas related to Fairtrade operations. This time the main purpose was to do a need analysis of producer groups in terms of programmes and gather ideas for fundraising with Fairtrade Foundation UK.
Cotton Network Meeting, India

MONITORING, EVALUATION AND LEARNING

  • Tea Study in collaboration with Fairtrade Foundation: A scoping study for a programme on Tea in association with Fairtrade Foundation, UK and ILO was done in Assam. The findings of the study are aimed at informing the teams for designing interventions for improving the working condition among workers in Plantations.
  • Digitization of Monitoring Forms: The digitization of monitoring and finance forms is complete. Sri Lanka and Central Asia team have been using the platform for the pilot phase that began in Q1. This digitization and financial integration will harmonize data collection and reporting across the various countries in our region.
  • Living Wage Study for Sportsball in Pakistan: The findings of the study have been shared with the relevant Pakistani producers for their feedback.
  • Living wage report for Tea plantations, Sri Lanka: The study done with Sri Lankan Tea plantations, supported by Sri Lankan Associates, is at the final stage ready for publishing.

COMMUNICATIONS

  • People & Produce: NAPP has introduced a product periodical that shared relevant market insights and innovation both at market and producer level. Primarily targeted for producers, the periodical also holds interest for the wider system as it showcases producer drive or initiative in accessing new markets, responding to market trends and field innovation that reduces cost on production or allays negative environmental impact. The first edition focussed on coffee.
  • ‘Notes from the field’ Asia Pacific Newsletter: NAPP, launched its monthly newsletter from January 2017. The objective of the newsletter is to share the stories, updates and activities being undertaken in Asia Pacific region. The newsletter is circulated to a large readership across producers, Fairtrade system and external stakeholders.

marketing events & TRAININGS

  • Seed Fest 2017: The central theme of the seed festival is to conserve indigenous food varieties like vegetables, tubers and other crops and promote these varieties by in-house production at their own farms. The seed fest was started five years ago. During the initial years, indigenous seeds for vegetables and tuber crops were provided to the member farmers. From the very next year the farmers were asked to bring the produce from the farmers to display and sell at the festivals. Now the farmers are self-sufficient in terms of their food requirement whereas previously they were dependent on the market to buy these vegetables and tubers. Hence, the farmers celebrate this seed festival. Wide media coverage is given for this festival in newspapers and satellite televisions. Representatives from various NFO have attended the festival. NAPP participated in the Seed fest 2017 organised by an SPO in Kerala, India. Along with that an interview with the promoter of the SPO, beneficiaries of premium projects and a visit to various stalls in the seeds festival were undertaken.
  • Visit to Biofach, Nuremberg: NAPP received an opportunity to establish market linkages for its nine products with the leading buyers of Europe through its presence at Biofach.
Biofach, Nuremberg
  • A training programme on “Creating Winning Marketing Plans for Fairtrade markets” was conducted for Fairtrade producers from Pakistan and Sri Lanka in March 2017. The event was held in Fairtrade Tea plantations of Nuwareliya,Sri Lanka. The training received participation from 22 producer organizations. The first phase of this two-phase programme kicked off with classroom training on marketing, supply chain management, and real-world marketing case analysis. In Phase 2, producers went back to their organisations and implemented the learnings to build marketing plans for their organisations with guidance from NAPP’s Marketing team.
Marketing training, Sri Lanka

textile project update

  • Pre-assessment of Ginning operations vis a vis textile standards has begun. This included observing the activities undertaken at the two farms that were visited along with the spinning mill.
  • Three training sessions were conducted in Feb at two units. Rossitza from Fairtrade International and Casper- Journalist also attended one of the days. The aim of the trainings was to provide the basis for creating better management and worker support in the certification for textile standards.

organization development

  • Women Leadership Training, FTA: NAPP Gender expert and NAPP associate from Pakistan attended the training on Women’s Leadership conducted by Fairtrade Africa. This was to field test the manual which was prepared for the Women’s Leadership School, Africa. The training consisted of 10 days of interactive sessions that covered 10 modules including constitutional rights of women, Fairtrade gender strategy, self-confidence & self-esteem, group cohesion, women and leadership qualities, women and economy, women understanding money, income diversification and project management, strategic negotiation and influencing skills, masculinity and gender.
Women leadership training, FTA

thematic area-child rights

  • Child Rights Committee Training on objectives and ways of working training was conducted for a cotton producer in India.
  • Child labour issues awareness & productivity for Sugar SPOs: Meeting with representatives of the sugar SPOs in India was held to advise them about child labour remediation and good agricultural practices leading to better productivity.

thematic area-gender

  • Gender Training for South Tea producer supervisors at Coimbatore, India: 13 tea producers in South India participated in a gender training. 24 participants- supervisors from 9 POs participated in the training. It had 8 women participants and 16 male participants
  • Women leadership training for tea workers, Darjeeling: 22 women workers from 11 tea estates participated in the training. The participants learnt about Gender, Gender Discrimination, Gender Violence, and ways and means of redressal against abuse/sexual harassment at work place. There were also discussions on gender roles in decision making of Fairtrade Premium projects.
Women leadership training, Darjeeling

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