Plantwise Cambodia

CABI and the Rainforest Alliance have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to collaborate on ways to help smallholder farmers around the world grow safer and higher quality food – and increase their incomes in the process – through more sustainable agricultural practices.

With this partnership, producers will benefit from the exchange between knowledge and practice that the two strategic partners will bring towards reducing the impact of high-risk plant protection products (chemical pesticides) in production in favour of safer-to-use and sustainable biological controls.

Other elements of shared working, as outlined in the MoU, include creating training and digital learning products to support capacity building of agricultural service providers and supporting farmers to comply with voluntary crop production standards to deliver safer, environmentally friendly produce to higher value markets.

Dr Juliana Jaramillo, Lead Regenerative Agriculture, at the Rainforest Alliance, said, “With this partnership, we are certain we can advance our Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach more effectively and provide concrete tools for producers to start making the transition to a more regenerative agriculture, by combining the broad reach of our network and our field experience, with CABI’s extensive knowledge base.”

For example, the Rainforest Alliance joins Nespresso and Applied Insect Science (APIS) in sponsoring the CABI BioProtection Portal. This free web-based tool enables growers and agricultural advisors to discover information about registered biocontrol and biopesticide products available globally. Their sponsorship will see them adding their expertise in helping frontline communities build thriving rural economies rooted in more sustainable growing practices and forest stewardship.

Dr Ulrich Kuhlmann, Executive Director, Global Operations at CABI said, “CABI is delighted to be working in partnership with the Rainforest Alliance. Our shared expertise in promoting sustainable agricultural practices along the food value chain will further help to improve rural livelihoods for millions of smallholder farmers around the world.

“Our joint endeavours will be carried out while being mindful of the need to protect the earth’s biodiversity and ecosystems amid the myriad of challenges posed by climate change.”

One example of CABI’s work to help promote more environmentally friendly pest control to tackle crop-destroying locusts and grasshoppers in Africa. In Somalia, for instance, the FAO organised spraying of CABI-created biological control product Green Muscle over more than 100,000 hectares; no chemical pesticides were used.

The Rainforest Alliance, in turn has provided training workshops to more than 100,000 farmers in South Asia aimed at them adopting sustainable agricultural methods and improving farm management, with advice and guidance on manual and natural pest control techniques. This not only serves to reduce the use of expensive and harsh agrochemicals but lead to healthier soils and better yields over the long term.

Additional information

Main image: Promoting the benefits of natural and safer to use biological controls to tackle crop pests in Cambodia (Credit: CABI).

About CABI

CABI is an international not-for-profit organization that improves people’s lives by providing information and applying scientific expertise to solve problems in agriculture and the environment. Through knowledge sharing and science, CABI helps address issues of global concern such as improving global food security and safeguarding the environment. We do this by helping farmers grow more and lose less of what they produce, combating threats to agriculture and the environment from pests and diseases, protecting biodiversity from invasive species, and improving access to agricultural and environmental scientific knowledge. Our 49 member countries guide and influence our core areas of work, which include development and research projects, scientific publishing and microbial services.

About the Rainforest Alliance

The Rainforest Alliance is an international non-profit organization working at the intersection of business, agriculture, and forests to make responsible business the new normal. We are building an alliance to protect forests, improve the livelihoods of farmers and forest communities, promote their human rights, and help them mitigate and adapt to the climate crisis.

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The CABI BioProtection Portal

The CABI BioProtection Portal is a free, web-based tool that enables users to discover information about registered biocontrol and biopesticide products around the world. Available online, with an offline version coming soon, the CABI BioProtection Portal helps growers and agricultural advisors to identify, source and correctly apply biocontrol and biopesticide products against problematic pests in their crops. The portal can be accessed on multiple devices, thereby putting this valuable information at the fingertips of anyone who needs it.

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