US Government through USAID Funding Global Development Alliance in Vanilla Business

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The SVPN alliance will increase production of high quality, sustainably produced vanilla
The SVPN alliance will increase production of high quality, sustainably produced vanilla
Photo: USAID/Madagascar

Project aims to improve the livelihoods of 3,000 farmers while preserving Madagascar’s unique biodiversity

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

ANTANANARIVO - McCormick & Company, Incorporated, a global leader in flavor, and the National Cooperative Business Association CLUSA International (NCBA CLUSA), are pleased to continue their collaboration to strengthen vanilla cooperatives in Madagascar through a new USAID-funded Global Development Alliance (GDA) project aimed at improving the livelihoods of 3,000 farmers and preserving Madagascar’s unique biodiversity.

Sustainable Vanilla for People and Nature (SVPN), a three-year, $3 million activity co-financed by USAID and McCormick, is part of USAID’s Conservation and Communities Project (CCP). The SVPN Activity is designed to conserve biodiversity, avoid deforestation, and improve farmers’ livelihoods through sustainable vanilla production in the Sava and Analanjirofo regions of Madagascar. Through its Purpose-Led Performance initiatives, McCormick has committed to sustainably sourcing its herbs and spices, beginning with 100% of its branded iconic ingredients, including vanilla, and to increasing the resilience of 90% of the farmers who grow their iconic raw materials by 2025.

Madagascar is home to many endemic species that are increasingly vulnerable to changes in climate patterns and extreme natural events such as cyclones, which regularly strike the country. Because 85% of Madagascar’s people derive their livelihoods from climate-sensitive agriculture, most of the population is exposed to risks associated with higher temperatures and rainfall variability as well as disruptive floods, cyclones, and droughts. Given the country’s high level of biodiversity—80% of natural flora and fauna are unique to Madagascar—the loss of one hectare of forest in Madagascar has a greater negative impact on global biodiversity than one lost elsewhere. Additionally, deforestation from logging and poor agricultural practices is putting tremendous stress on landscapes with over 3.63 million hectares of tree cover lost between 2001-2018. This loss decreases Madagascar’s capacity for carbon sequestration, which weakens its contribution to the fight against climate change.

However, through public-private partnerships such as the one between USAID and McCormick, this destructive trend can be reversed. The Sustainable Vanilla for People and Nature alliance will increase production of high quality, sustainably produced vanilla that improves the resilience of farmers and their families to climate change and other shocks such as COVID-19 through health insurance system and improved access to savings and loans; and strengthen cooperative businesses to augment the income of farmers and create economic opportunities.  These efforts will reduce threats to biodiversity, counteract deforestation, improve natural resource management, reduce Global Greenhouse Gas emissions, and enhance the wellbeing of farmers and their families.