Friday, in the Étoile du Nord in Carrefour Vincent (Drouillard), the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the Inter American Development Bank (IDB), and the National Brasserie d’Haiti SA (BRANA), have joined the sorghum farmers to celebrate the integration of the IDB to the program Smallholders Alliance for Sorghum in Haiti (SMASH), the alliance of small sorghum farmers in Haiti, launched in 2013 by the BRANA.
Peter Mulrean, Ambassador of the United States in Haiti, Jose Matthijsse, the Director General of BRANA, Gilles Damais, the Head of IDB operations in Haiti and members of the private sector, among others, participated in this activity.
IDB by joining SMASH provides a grant of 2.4 million US dollars, which is in addition to 3.4 million of the BRANA and to the 1.7 million of USAID. “The subsidy granted by IDB group will help increase the number of producers participating in the program. They will benefit from the technical support of the program’s agronomists to increase local production,” declared Gilles Damais, Head of IDB operations in Haiti.
Recall that the SMASH project aims to increase the incomes of about 18,000 Haitian small farmers who sell local sorghum improved to the BRANA, for the manufacture and marketing of beverage Malta H (a product purchased and consumed by Haitian). SMASH is a partnership quite innovative between a bilateral donor (USAID), a multilateral lender (IDB), and private companies to improve the Haitian value chain, and thus sustainably increase the incomes of farmers.
The Ambassador Mulrean declared “SMASH is a Haitian program for the Haitians. BRANA, is an institution in Haiti and farmers participating in SMASH program will have a reliable buyer for their local sorghum for years to come. The US Government is committed to working with its Haitian counterparts to increase the number and quality of this type of partnership in Haiti.”
So far, SMASH engaged 3,100 farmers. The participation of the IDB will expand the program to more farmers in more regions with a growing potential of sorghum, including Limonade and Malfety in the North and Northeast departments; Croix des Bouquets, Cabaret and around Port-au-Prince in the West; Les Cayes, Camp Perrin and Cavaillon in the South.
The IDB support will also add to the program of measures designed to strengthen the resilience of crops to climate change, to reduce the vulnerability of buyers and producers of the supply chain.