Our commitment to sustainable and traceable spice production
With the Nedspice Farmers Partnership Programme (NFPP), we encourage farmers to make their cultivation practices more environmentally, economically and socially sustainable. Not just for our benefit, but mostly to future-proof their own livelihood. Running a small farm isn’t easy, especially with global trends that demand faster, cheaper and larger food production. Many young farmers leave agriculture to try their luck somewhere else. Those that remain are pressured into high-intensive agriculture, which promotes the use of chemical fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides. This negatively affects soil fertility and harms the health of local communities.
The Nedspice Farmers Partnership Programme invites farmers into a financially attractive and long-term partnership. Through training and on-farm support we help to develop sustainable and profitable farms, that produce high-quality and safe spices. Currently, over 3000 farmers from Vietnam and India have joined NFPP. Find out more about the programme and our expansion plans below.
The NFPP project areas in India are located in the states of Rajasthan, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala. In Rajasthan NFPP farmers cultivate cumin, fenugreek and fennel. In Andhra Pradesh NFPP farmers cultivate turmeric and in Kerala NFPP activities for ginger, nutmeg and turmeric are being carried out. You can learn more about our NFPP activities in India in the video below.
In crop season 2013/2014 Nedspice initiated NFPP for Cumin. The programme started off with 44 farmers, divided over four villages in Rajasthan, India. In 2020, NFPP for Cumin has grown into 866 participating farmers from 46 different villages, who collectively produce 2500 MT of sustainable cumin.
The objective of NFPP is to increase sustainable production of spices. NFPP cumin farmers receive on farm support and regular trainings on how to improve their farming in a sustainable way. The fast growth of the programme can be attributed to our committed team of agronomists who successfully assisted many farmers in the road to sustainability. Sustainable farming increases farmers income and improves their direct living conditions due to less use of chemical pesticides. As good news travels fast, we are lucky enough to welcome new cumin farmers every crop season. The increased demand for sustainable cumin encourages us to further grow NFPP in the coming years.
Cumin farmers can benefit from a so-called Package of Practice (PoP). A PoP is provided by Nedspice field technicians and helps farmers make the most sustainable decisions throughout the cultivation process. The PoP includes for example, information on seed treatment and recommendations on the application of nutrient solutions during each crop stage. The PoP and specific crop and farmer details are uploaded into the NFPP mobile app for training and monitoring purposes.
We are constantly looking for new ways to advance NFPP for Cumin. Just recently, we have started to promote cashless transactions to increase farmers’ safety and convenience. To encourage NFPP cumin farmers to open bank accounts, we have organised bank account opening camps in subregions of Rajasthan, in association with the Bank of Baroda.
The Nedspice Farmers Partnership Programme in Vietnam centres around the production of sustainable black pepper. The NFPP project started in 2013 in the province of Binh Phuoc and has since expanded to neighbouring provinces of Dak Nong and Binh Duong. The success of NFPP is mainly owed to the fact that farmers are treated as partners and important stakeholders throughout the process, which results in true sustainable relations.
What started as a small-scale two-year project to sustainably improve pepper production in 2013, has now developed into long-term programme involving over 2000 farmers in three provinces in 2013.
In 2013 Nedspice partnered with IDH (Sustainable Trade Initiative) for a two-year pilot project on sustainable pepper production in the Binh Phuoc Province of Vietnam. The project assisted farmers to sustainably improve their farming practices to comply with Rainforest Alliance (SAN) standard. And with success, because within a year over 250 farmers were Rainforest Alliance certified. This means that biodiversity protection, ecosystem conservation and labour occupational health and safety is guaranteed.
The initial project was such a success, that Nedspice continued to educate and assist black pepper farmers in the Bin Phuoc province and even expanded to neighbouring provinces of Dak Nong and Binh Duong. Seven years after the start of the pilot, over 2000 farmers are involved in the Nedspice Farmers Partnership Programme (NFPP) in Vietnam, with 500+ farmers Rainforest Alliance (RA) certified. For the future NFPP is looking to expand even further through NFPP Franchise model and validate the programme by making NFPP a verified standard.
The Nedspice Farmers Partnership Programme is beneficial for both the farmers and for us. Farmers receive a price premium for their products, cultivation training, access to market information and community support through community outreach activities of the programme. Nedspice in return secures a long-term relation with loyal suppliers of traceable spices and can count on consistent quantity and verifiable quality. By improving farming conditions, we hope to secure the next generation of black pepper farmers. And equally important, the programme allows us to offer our customers high-quality sustainable spices that adhere to all strict food safety regulations.
The NFPP team in India realised that cumin farmers in Rajasthan heavily depend on fertilizers and pesticides they buy from local dealers. Dealers who mostly issue inferior products that result in soil nutrient degradation, low yield and non-compliance with regulations on pesticide residues. That is why they initiated Nedspice Kisaan Club in 2018.
The Nedspice Kisaan Club selects farmers from NFPP programme, who then receive an NKC smart card. This card can be used to procure agri-inputs at the Nedspice distribution centres at a reduced price. Based on the information stored on the card, the right type and quantity of inputs is recommended by NFPP executives for the farmers’ crop. NKC farmers do not have to pay for the inputs directly, but costs will be deducted from their harvest income afterwards. This enables farmers to procure tailormade high-quality inputs without investing money beforehand, as well as receiving a higher price for their crop owing to better quality. Simultaneously, Nedspice benefits from quality products, increased control over its supply chain and loyal farmers.
Nedspice supports farmers in improving agricultural practices. Good agricultural practices need to be efficient and compliant with domestic and international regulations. Nedspice currently applies both the SAN (Sustainable Agriculture Network) and SAC (Sustainable Agriculture Code) standards.
Through partnership building Nedspice aims to set up long-term relationships between the company and its suppliers. Farmers are supported with a price premium and continual information services concerning market price, production and quality through traditional farmer meetings and through modern communication tools, such as the NFPP app. These services result in loyal farmers, verifiable quality and consistent quantity while farmers can enjoy and count on a fair price for their products.
Nedspice community outreach activities aim to respond to the wider needs of farmers’ communities. Learn more about what Nedspice does to support farmer communities.