The world population is projected to increase to 9 Billion people by 2050. Against the backdrop of today’s world population of 7 Billion people and the limited space on our earth, the agricultural sector requires transformation. However, the agricultural sector failed to create the required farming models. In fact, the opposite is true, young farmers are leaving their inherited farms to take up work in urban areas and the poorest of the poor elsewhere move to rural areas and clear areas of forests. Unsurprisingly, agricultural expansion has been a great driver of deforestation since the industrial revolution.
It is even estimated that at this current pace, the world rain forests could be completely cleared in less than 1 century. As governments, public institutions and the civil society organizations struggle to prevent these detrimental effects, the question arise who is really to blame. The farmers?
We believe that farmers are agents of positive impacts, but lack the means to do so. In other words, farmers do not have the same opportunities as entrepreneurs in for example, Europe or the United States. The lack of access to financing models with low interest rates is what keeps farmers from economic advancement.
Farmers have no choice than to ask traders to provide them with financial advances to either pay for the maintenance activities of their crops or school fees of their kids. Traders provide farmers with financial advancements under the condition that farmers will sell their harvest against low prices to them in return. As such, these farmers are trapped in a negative feedback loop that hampers their economic and social advancement.