UNODC alternative development projects in Colombia
Strengthening of alternative development productive projects
The main objective of the project is to train farmers in the departments of Narino, El Choco and Norte de Santander how to rationally use forest resources using sustainable and environmentally friendly methods. An important component of the project strategy is to improve food security based on agroforestry activities, with the involvement of community councils as major partners, aiming to reduce dependency on coca bush and empowering communities. The project also aims to strengthen the competitive ability of micro-, small- and medium-sized rural producers in Colombia so that they can implement sustainable marketing models for agro-industrial producers involved in alternative development projects.
Under a programme financed by the Inter-American Development Bank, UNODC is assisting commercially viable farm enterprises in placing their products in established national and export markets. Through this project, support is provided in areas such as modern business management and practices, product quality, packaging, marketing and distribution. Assistance is also provided to gain access to specialty or niche markets worldwide, such as environmentally friendly and fair-trade markets.
Alternative development with local governments
The project aims to strengthen farmers' business practices and production/ quality control capacities, as regards cash crops with proven commercial markets both internally as well as for export: cocoa, coffee, rubber, apiculture and sugar cane. Additionally, the project gives legal support to those families that need to legalize their land titles. By focusing on land titles, the programme helps farmers to obtain credits and prevents migration. Project activities are carried out in close cooperation with local governments. Since inception, the programme has developed strong linkages with the private sector (supermarket chains willing to put alternative development products on their shelves), as well as with influential national federations (coffee, cocoa) capable of assisting farmers with product commercialization. After the first project phase in the department of Antioquia proved to be successful, activities were enlarged and extended to the departments of Córdoba and Huila.
Support to monitor and implement the integrated and sustainable illicit crop reduction and alternative development strategy in Colombia
This project is directed at improving the socio-economic condition of farmers by increasing their income through support for their products' sale as well as through contribution to environmental conservation. This is to be achieved by improving national capacity to design and implement sustainable alternative development programmes, including preventive actions, within the broader national development context, aimed at reducing and eliminating illicit crop cultivation, mainstreaming alternative development and environmental protection needs in areas under illicit crop cultivation. An important component of the project strategy is the enhancement of existing partnerships with international entities for the certification of fair-trade and organic products and with the private sector to promote commercially viable alternative development products and services. Project interventions also aim to improve knowledge and tools for better policymaking, planning, decision making, implementation and assessment of national drug control policies.