Linkages between Food Producers and Tourism Enterprises in Nicaragua
The ST-EP project on “Linkages between Food Producers and Tourism Enterprises in Nicaragua" was completed at the end of 2010 after two and a half years of implementation made possible by a tripartite partnership among the UNWTO, SNV and the ST-EP Foundation.
The initial idea of the project, under the responsibility of the Nicaraguan Association of Cooperatives (CLUSA), was to develop an inclusive business plan, including the creation of a system of supplying fruits and vegetables sourced from local producers to hotels in Managua and its region.
Workshops based on "learning by doing" methods were organized by CLUSA to train small producers in various production techniques with the objective of achieving the quality standards required by hotels and restaurants. Moreover, a revolving fund was established for the purchase of seeds and agricultural equipment.
Small Farmer, the wholesale outlet of CLUSA, served as the sales network while at the same time carrying out quality control of the products. Relations were subsequently established between the small hotels of the HOPEN network, restaurants and supermarket chains. Today, 53 local producers (microbusinesses and cooperatives) supply their products to Small Farmer.
This project is in line with the good practices recommended by the UNWTO for poverty reduction, namely, the supply of goods and services by the poor or by enterprises employing poor people, with the aim of avoiding economic leakages and thus generate higher income for the local economic circuit.