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JAKARTA, Indonesia, 14th March 2017 – Louis Dreyfus Company (LDC) announced today a partnership with NGO Business for Development (B4D) on the Inang Naburju (“Good Mothers”) project that aims to improve the livelihoods of women coffee farmers in the Lake Toba region in North Sumatra, Indonesia.

Under the Good Mothers’ Coffee initiative, LDC and B4D will create an inclusive business model through a farmer engagement program comprising agronomy training and equipment supply to enhance farmers’ current productivity. Once these farmers’ yields have improved, further program interventions may be introduced in the areas of education and healthcare, to improve the community’s wellbeing.

LDC and B4D have also formed a direct buyer partnership to market and retail the sustainably produced coffee to premium markets, starting with a first shipment to Australia earlier this year.

Imran Nasrullah, CEO of LDC Indonesia says, “This meaningful partnership with B4D underscores LDC’s commitment to promote the economic development and improve the quality of life of the communities in which we operate. The Inang Naburju are a special group of women, each with an inspiring story of resilience, kinship and dreams for the future. We are privileged to have the opportunity to work alongside them and to help make a difference to their lives and that of future generations.”

Mark Ingram, CEO of Business for Development comments, “It is wonderful to work with LDC to develop an Inclusive Business in Indonesia that will empower these women to lift themselves out of poverty. Through the partnership, their economic activity will improve as they are included in the value chain. We are committed to expanding the program to ensure a long term sustainable and profitable outcome for our target farmers and market partners.

”The Lake Toba region is regarded as one of the best quality coffee producing areas in the world, with coffee sourced here often referred to as ‘Lintong’. Many of the women coffee farmers living here are widowed grandmothers aged between their 50s to late 60s. Even though these communities have been farming coffee for around 60 to 100 years, the farmers, predominantly due to isolation, have not received any formal training in basic agronomic practices.

Last December, as a part of a feasibility study, 92 women farmers from three villages participated in a two-day training workshop where they were given an overview of the coffee plantation agroecosystem, and were trained in tree rejuvenation (pruning), integrated pest management and fertilizer application. They also received resources in the form of pruning shears, as well as materials for making pest traps and pest/disease control preparations. The plan is to conduct further training for these women between coffee-picking seasons to help improve their yields.

Beyond this group of women farmers, there is also significant scope to expand and scale the project at a later stage to support around 1000 farmers living in similar conditions in the nearby city of Dolok Sanggul.

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