Coffee Growers Combat Climate Change

A $15 million allocation from the USDA’s Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities program will help local coffee growers improve their farms and address climate change challenges. The program, “Café del Futuro” (PR Climate Smart Coffee), aims to promote the planting of shade trees and fine wood to improve and protect the coffee harvest. The funding comes from part of $1 billion set aside by President Joe Biden’s administration for competitive projects.

Of this allocation, $10 million will go directly to coffee growers, providing economic incentives of $500 per rope to adopt climate-smart conservation practices on their farms and to subsidize the cost of trees to transition to agroforestry systems, revitalizing existing farms and making them more sustainable. The project covered 2,000 coffee growers in the 10 mountain coffee-growing municipalities, where 85% of the coffee producers reside.

The project will diversify producers’ income and contribute to a positive environmental impact by quantifying and verifying carbon capture under the Scope 3 standard. Procafe has contributed significantly to carbon sequestration through the planting of more than 3.2 million trees.

Puerto Rican coffee currently represents 19.4% of the total coffee sold, with between 28,000 and 33,000 quintals harvested on the island in 2022. Foreign labor is essential to address the challenges faced by the agricultural sector, including a low birth rate and an older population.

Read More @ Weekly Journal

Suggested Reading