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Central America Agro Food Programme

  • Duration:
    2012 to 2016
  • Fresh Fruit and Vegetables, Coffee, Tea, Honey and Sweeteners, Processed Fruit and Vegetables and Edible Nuts, Spices and Herbs, Cacao
  • Specialty coffee, Cacao, Tropical fruit, Roots and tubers, Honey, Chia seeds, Cardamom, Off-season vegetables
  • Guatemala, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador

Closed for applications**Business Support Organisations and importers can still participate

The Agro Food Central America programme aims to increase exports from four countries: El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Guatemala. It covers a wide range of agricultural food products, from coffee, honey and nuts to fresh fruits and vegetables.

Central American countries traditionally export to the region and to North America. To diversify export markets and to benefit from the Association Agreement between Central America and the European Union (ratified in 2012), CBI developed this programme.

The goal of the programme is to increase the export of 53 SME companies with an amount of €25.000.000 by one year after the completion of the programme. Export growth in this sector will strengthen the economy and create more jobs, especially for poor people.

In each of the value chains selected we have set up a regional project. In these projects we have integrated these elements:

  • Giving export coaching to small and medium-sized enterprises

  • Overcoming sector-wide issues, by implementing Export Enabling Environment Support Projects

  • Helping business support organisations to offer better export services

  • Sharing specific market intelligence for different product-market combinations

Project details

The programme began in 2012 and will end in 2016. After selecting and auditing companies, we began to train them. The training activities also covered:

  • Product development
  • Market knowledge
  • Corporate Social Responsibility and
  • Certification (for example ISO22000, HACCP, and GlobalGAP).

Another important activity in this programme is collective trade fair attendance. Collaboration in the region is important, as often export volumes are more interesting for buyers on a regional level. Besides, the image of Central America adds to the visibility of each country and attracts additional buyers.

To overcome sector-wide issues that cannot be solved on company level alone, we are implementing sector specific Export Enabling Environment Support Projects (EEESP). For example, we helped to set up a regional cocoa brand called CUNAKakaw.

For the regional honey sector and national coffee institutes we are also developing branding trajectories, product diversification strategies, and joint trade show participations to make sure that these quality products become more well-known in Europe.

To support the promotion of sustainable export from Guatemala and Nicaragua we help two partner organisations improve their services: Agexport in Guatemala and APEN in Nicaragua.

Project participants and products

A total of 53 companies are taking part in this programme. They offer a wide range of high-potential agro food products.

Honduras

Specialty coffees, cocoa, tropical and exotic fruits (including processed), tropical roots and tubers (including sweet potato)  

El Salvador

Specialty coffee and honey

Nicaragua

Specialty coffee, honey, cocoa, chia seeds, tropical and exotic fruits

Guatemala

Specialty coffee, honey, cardamom, tropical and exotic fruits, off-season vegetables

Meet the participants

You can contact CBI to find out more, or to get in touch with these exporters.

Another possibility is to meet these potential suppliers at the trade fairs they will attend in Europe.

Partners

Our main partners in this programme are:

CBI developed the current programme together with the main partners. These business support organisations also facilitate the implementation of CBI activities and supporting exporters in their countries.

Get involved as an importer

Are you a European importer interested in agro food products from Central America? You can contact CBI to get more information, or to meet with suppliers who have been trained to export to Europe.

Get involved in this project