An Overview Of Our Solution
Fazenda Malabar is a project that produces food through regenerative agriculture and aims to inspire behavioral change by embodying our mission of ecological citizenship, revitalizing the ecosystem, and informing healthier consumer choices. We count on an international volunteering program to prepare fresh, organic food to nourish the surrounding area and promote a plant-rich diet. We use agroforestry technology to maintain rows of trees and consorted seedbeds, which creates an increasingly rich and productive ecosystem. Our system absorbs carbon emissions, increases biodiversity and enables food production while restoring the environment concurrently. We believe ecological citizenship is a driving force for alternative sustainable consumption, and that our initiative actively promotes sustainability and provides a meaningful social context for its expression
- Population Impacted 6000 people
- Continent: South America
The world food production is much bigger than the demand, but much of it ends to be wasted. According to FAO one third of all the food produced is not consumed and much of it is wasted before arriving to final consumers (around 1 billion tons a year).
Furthermore, vegetable and fruit yields between 2002 and 2008 suggest an increased probability of food security of households in metropolitan regions.
Lastly, agriculture and health sectors remain disconnected from priorities, policy, and analysis. Sao Paulo has just 20 farmer’s markets and organic food has been slow to rise in popularity. Brazilian farmers use more pesticides per volume of crop than farmers in any other country in the world, and consumers are just awakening to what that could mean to their health. Twenty-nine percent of fruits and vegetables have pesticide levels that exceed government-recommended levels. The average price for organic food in metropolitan areas can be about $5 higher than for non-organic version.
Describe the technical solution you wanted the target audience to adopt
Because our approach to ecological citizenship is multi-prong, our technical solution involves education, organic food delivery, and environmental impact. Sustainability in all senses.
The whole project is designed and communicated in a way to show that all our acts are reality creators, locally and globally.
We want our supporters to understand that by investing on Malabar's project they are creating a reality of sustainability, soil enrichment and increasing welfare for all the involved people.
On the productive side, our system counts on volunteering as an important pillar of the project, in which we exchange our principles and knowledges for working hours for the project. Volunteers profoundly experience living simply, connecting to the environment, learning permaculture, organic farming principles, living sustainably, all through hands-on experience.
We believe that Malabar's project promotes positive, sustainable behavioral change that also fights climate change.
Type of intervention
Describe your behavioral intervention
Integrating sustainable consumption and production principles in everyday patterns of behavior is a major policy challenge for governments seeking long-term sustainability, and one that we aim to change.
By approximating final consumers to food producers, aiming to reduce food waste and prices. At the same time we increase convenience and taste, by delivering food straight to consumer's doorsteps and ensuring adoption of a plant-rich diet with greater variety even in the outskirts of the city. By knowing and letting know that people get access to safe, nutritious food within their means.
By delivering only sazonal food and making our supporters conscious of the importance and the impacts reduction of this act. (We have now a days 30 thousands edible plants species, we eat only 30 of them and even though we still have 60% of our calories coming from only 5 species). Those are all ways of changing consumer behavior.
Our aim is also to improve behavior in the production cycle, by impacting volunteers as much as other people who get in touch with the project (we have now 6 thousand followers in instagram and facebook together). We teach the entire farming cycle, from composting and planting to harvesting, to international volunteers who are often motivated to start their own vegetable garden or shop more responsibly for organic goods upon returning to their home country.
As needed, please explain the type of intervention in more detail
EMOTION: From the day our volunteers have direction for how we live sustainably and lead by example. In our own homes, we minimize electricity and water consumption, eat the organic produce from our own farm, and shape the experience of our volunteers, workers, and farming community.
SOCIAL: We have deep ties to the community we serve, and we find that our mission spread when we encourage a direct relationship between consumers and the local community. That means that consumers get to meet and speak with the farmers who are responsible for growing their food during bi-weekly delivery, which promotes mutual trust. It also renews the farmer’s commitment to grow the best possible food, as they build real ties with the people they serve.
Describe your implementation
We know that affordability, availability and quality of food have a direct impact on meeting food needs and consumer health. Our farmers and the residents of Malabar therefore live out our mission and lead by example. For instance, all employees receive the same salary from the field to the general manager. We also aim to reduce losses and wastage to reduce food costs. By promoting educational farm visits across the hectare that we oversee, we raise the knowledge of citizens, which increases the resources of households and thereby helps improve access to food. In addition, we disseminate educational material through our Facebook and Instagram pages, which count upwards of six thousand followers and likes combined.
We institute a zero waste practice using recycling, dry toilets, composting methods in our farmhouse, our volunteer house, and on the farm plot. . We implement this as a closed-loop system so as to minimize waste and use organic matter as a sustainable fertilizer. We aim to increase the reach of this project with a macro-scale garbage recycling and composting project. As compost use in agriculture increases, there is a positive environmental impact on nutrient supply, carbon sequestration, soil workability, crop nutritional quality and yield, and pest disease suppression, all eschewing the chemical alternatives that deplete and degrade soil and individual health.
We remedy the pesticide problem by being completely organic and creating our own natural fertilizers. We exchange crops with other local farmers who institute similar organic standards. What especially enables us to remain organic, even though the slow process entails discarding subpar leafy vegetables and handpicking crops, is our commitment to allying our mission with the larger issue of public health in Brazi
Our major obstacle is to take care of our tree lines at the same time we need to continue producing to deliver our vegetables bag.
We work with multiple local farmers and organizations: Associação de Agricultura Natural de Campinas (ANC), Instituto Terra Livre (Local farmers cooperative), as well as a new meal delivery startup (DuLocal) we are proud to partner with. We are excited to expand into the technology sector by providing DuLocal with organic vegetable produce, which is then turned into home-cooked meals by members of underserved communities and delivered to customers. This not only allows stay-at-home moms or people seeking an extra source of income to receive cooking training and stimulate the local economy, but it also ensures that customers will conveniently receive meals using fresh, organic, healthy ingredients and increase their uptake of plant foods. This program is still in the pilot stages but is another exciting way to expand the reach of our organic farm to inform healthier consumer choices, and teach marketable skills to lower income residents of the area.
We are also partnering with Banco do Brasil for financing new equipments to expand our production.
Who adopted the desired behaviors and to what degree?
We impact the behaviors of consumers, partners and volunteers. Volunteers come out of the experience with new sustainable lifestyle options.
We have a positive behavioral impact on the farming community, as we are spreading the principles of regenerative agriculture. Finally, we aim to move beyond organic as a niche environmental interest and return to small-scale production, promote concern for the impacts of the food we eat. We must require social as well as technological innovation to educate and inform our consumers about the benefits of our practices, as well as how localizing food supply chains cut the energy and pollution associated with transporting food around the world, increase agricultural productivity and food security, and promote individual health. We hope to create diverse embedded food networks across Brazil, first within the state of Sao Paulo and next in neighboring area, strengthen local economies and keep contributing to rural development beyond Itatiba.
How did you impact natural resource use and greenhouse gas emissions?
Impacting organic farmer behavior is fundamental because it accelerates wilderness organic farming, and in turn the small-scale farmer communities and global farmland agriculture. We mentioned above how agroforestry techniques helped us revitalize the land and leave the environment better off than we found it. In addition, we also impact natural resources in our farming community. By increasing the reach of small-scale farmers and lowering costs to make organic options more attractive to consumers, it is important to take into account not only the attitude of farmers, but also their perception of risk and the support of government policies.
What were some of the resulting co-benefits?
Return on investment
How could we successfully replicate this solution elsewhere?