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Brazil: cultivating a bright future for guarana

When a fruit becomes an iconic feature of a country’s biodiversity, it commands respect. Guarana has long been cultivated by family farmers in its natural home of the Amazon basin and in other parts of Brazil. Guarana extract is an important component in many of our flavour creations and we are committed to its preservation.

Guarana

From its natural home in the Amazon basin, the beautiful fruit of the guarana has grown to become an important part of Brazil’s culture and history. The fruit is an iconic feature of Brazilian biodiversity and has long been cultivated through family farming practices in other regions of the country. At Givaudan we use guarana extract in many of our flavour creations and as such we are committed to its preservation. To this end, we work to support the social and economic development of the communities who depend on it for their livelihood.

Givaudan is working in partnership with a local supplier to support a cooperative of 62 producer families in the southern Bahia region. The goal is to improve their quality of life and secure a long-term supply of the crop. By helping local producers and suppliers to boost productivity and improve quality, we are able to guarantee them a stable source of income. This is essential to strengthening the fabric of their community.

But this approach depends on building trust in our sourcing relationships. Daily contact allows us to share knowledge and offer technical support. A full-time agricultural technician works with producers on fostering continuous improvements in production and compliance with local environmental laws.

One example is the installation of new ovens for drying guarana seeds; another involves the promotion of good agricultural practices such as pruning and the application of natural fertilisers to improve soil quality and enhance productivity. The project sponsored by the Givaudan Foundation aims to compensate for soil impoverishment by implementing a nutritional rebalancing strategy using organic inputs which are distributed to the farming community; results will be tested between 2018 and 2020. Enhanced productivity also helps preserve the local environment and biodiversity – growers require less land, which reduces pressure on the Brazilian Atlantic Forest.  

“We’ll continue to take direct action to make life better for all those in the cooperative by running social projects to improve sanitation and education. We believe the people who live and work at the source of our ingredients make an important contribution to our business,” says Alessandra, Purchasing Manager.

“For this reason we are committed to supporting the producers in overcoming the challenges they face in their daily lives and work. By helping the guarana cooperative to develop better practices, we are creating new value in the supply chain for our business, our suppliers and customers.”