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Manual for Collaborative Research with Smallholder Coffee Farmers

Published by:
Publication date
Number of Pages
Type of Publication:
Guidelines & Learning resources
Focus Region:
Asia and the Pacific
Latin America & the Caribbean
Focus Topic:
Agricultural Value Chains / Agri-Businesses
Health & Diseases
Knowledge Management
Type of Risk:
Biological & environmental
Managerial & operational
Type of Risk Managment Option:
Risk coping
Risk reduction/mitigation
Jeffery W. Bentley, Peter S. Baker
CABI Commodities

This manual stemmed from the CFC-funded Integrated Management of Coffee Berry Borer project, ICO/02 (1998-2002). The aim of the project was to develop cost-effective and environmentally friendly ways of controlling the world’s most serious pest of coffee, which would be useful to smallholder farmers, who supply the majority of the world’s coffee.

But new methods, however well intentioned, are no use if they are not
adopted. Over the last part of the 20th century, scientists and development experts became increasingly worried that much technology was not being adopted by the rural poor, and came to the conclusion that a principal reason was lack of understanding of the farmer’s perspective, his problems and his capabilities. From this sprang new ways of working with farmers to ensure enhanced uptake; these methods can be broadly referred to as “participatory”.
It is our contention that these developments have largely by-passed the coffee industry and because of the secular, global change that has struck it in recent years, this approach must now be more widely understood and assayed.
It is the purpose of this manual therefore, to explain some of the principles and practices to those who are interested in improving the situation of smallholder coffee farmers. We warmly thank the Common Fund for Commodities for allowing us to use their funds to produce this volume