In 2019, the Development Facility co-sponsored part of the “De Mi Tierra” program in Honduras in association with Ficohsa, one of the fund’s PIs, designed to provide seven family farmers in rural areas with greater access to finance and technical training in sustainable production while creating new market opportunities to trade their vegetable products. Through the construction of water reservoirs and a drip-irrigation system, producers were able to double their production volume, harvest three times a year, and increase their overall income. The project also hosted trainings for 46 individuals on how to use and manage the new systems, along with gender equality in business management and soil conservation practices.  

Given the success of the first phase, the DF aimed to replicate this success in a second phase with a wider selection of vegetables, including onions, potatoes, carrots, and lettuce, and expanding its reach to new geographic areas, activities, and beneficiaries. In the second phase, three water reservoirs were installed and connected to the corresponding drip irrigation systems. Each water reservoir has a capacity of 60,000 liters with an irrigation capacity of two hectares per day. The drip irrigation systems allow to improve water management, supply through water scarcity periods and increase water use efficiency by 90%.

Furthermore, one solar drying system was installed. The system reduces the costs and time of drying and dehydrating onions by using solar energy as primary source. It also increases the life cycle of the onion, through the control of pathogenic microorganisms. It is estimated that the onions will maintain for around 7 to 14 days, at a temperature between 27 and 30 degrees, a key aspect for product quality. Each structure has the capacity to dry 1000kg of onion. 

Both phases have significantly improved the productivity and sustainability of the Honduran smallholders.  


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