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Located in the southwest of Paraná state, Brazil, around the world famous Iguaçu Falls, these 163 families grouped under Gebana have become RTRS Certified, and are the first group of this size to do so in Latin America. These 163 new certified producers are all smallholders who make their living of mixed farming  systems in which soy is their main cash crop.

LOCATION Paraná state, Brazil
TONNES 8,138

Stefan Lanz

PROTECTED AREAS 672 ha permanently protected river margins and legal reserves

Reasons for Certifying

RTRS certification is for gebana a possible means of extending our product portfolio. Success of this now mainly depends on the growth of the RTRS marked and its willingness to support smallholder production.

On a secondary level, pursuing  RTRS certification means gebana can involve more farmers on discussion on sustainable production methods. In this way, RTRS certification can also serve as a stepping stone for conventional producers considering organic production.

RTRS Experience

This experience proves how RTRS Certification and credit selling are possible for small producers, too, and we are expecting more of these experiences in the years to come. In the meantime, we are proud to introduce their achievement, as they are now producing soy according to international standards and maintain a rich community culture alive.

Benefits of the RTRS Certification

Gebana Brasil is specialized in smallholder organic soy farming. RTRS allows us to move beyond that niche, and apply our know-how in sustainable production and group management to a larger group. Thanks to this accomplishment, not only did they receive training and adapted their production systems, but also changed their practices and learnt to take better care of their environment. As a matter of fact they have already sold more than 2000 RTRS credits to Unilever. The approach to focus on continual improvement and rewarding progress has composed a crucial success factor of this experience

Other Relevant Information

Another key factor was the presence of entities that accumulate knowledge and experience in the process of working with farmer groups and with certification. In this case, it was Coopafi (the family farmers’ cooperative active in the region) and Solidaridad Network who helped this process succeed. All of them are part of a project which counts with generous support of private partners such as Keurslagers, FrieslandCampina, Interchicken and Arla, and institutional donors such as the IFC’s Biodiversity in Agricultural Commodities Program.