Malawian smallholders’ first macadamia nut harvest
As part of our commitment to sustainable sourcing, Intersnack engages in field projects to create more transparent and sustainable value chains. Central to this is our work to support local farmers and processors to gain access to national and international markets.
The aim of these field projects is to play a positive and significant role in building capacity for the sustainable sourcing of our products and to contribute to the achievement of our strategic goals. An example of such a field project is Project Macadamia in Malawi, a long-term collaboration between Intersnack, our supplier, Sympany and the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Development Aid from People to People (DAPP) Malawi.
A longstanding issue for smallholder farmers in Malawi was that they lacked the necessary materials, knowledge and sales channels to farm and sell macadamia nuts. Moreover, the long start-up time represented a significant obstacle. It takes seven years from the time a macadamia sapling is planted to harvesting the first nuts, and trees are not in full production for a further three to five years.
“Besides the macadamia seedlings, through this project I received valuable knowledge on the best way to grow macadamias and prevent diseases. I also learnt how to make best use of the land by growing these nuts together with other crops, such as legumes.”
Odetta, Project Macadamia participant
The objective of the collaborative project was to offer smallholder farmers a new source of income. Since this project began in 2014, together with partners, we have helped to provide farmers with 300,000 macadamia trees. To date we have reached 3,000 farmers with this project, of which 50% are women.
Our initial target date for the first harvest was 2022. The first nuts from the macadamia trees were, however, harvested ahead of schedule in 2020.
We are committed to continually improving working conditions in our supply chains. Through dialogue and audits, we assess any issues or risks. We work with our suppliers, partners and multi-stakeholder initiatives to improve working conditions, crop yields, product quality and the livelihoods of farmers in our supply chains.