Members of “Santa Fé” Water Committee are seen at a water spring they have protected with conservation works in Opatoro, La Paz, Honduras.

Insights

Protecting Water Resources With Supply Chain Actors

by | Feb 2, 2017

Key Insight

As we looked into the issue, we began to make connections along the supply chain. We realized that the best possible way to engage these farms was through the supply chain. These large coffee estates were tied to a buyer or exporter that they worked closely with to receive technical services and understand the needs of the market.

By working together with all actors of a supply chain, we can tackle problems and identify solutions in a more sustainable and efficient way. CRS Blue Harvest seeks to protect and restore potable water resources in agricultural lands by promoting water and soil conservation practices and improving water governance.

In Central America, we work in coffeeland mountain ranges where many potable water sources are located. In Matagalpa, Nicaragua, as our work began, we found that many of the water sources for communities downstream were located in large coffee estates. This became a management challenge for CRS because our usual project participants are small farmers. We had to work as a team to reorient our focus and understand that if we wanted to protect water sources for populations we had to extend our scope to include groups with whom we didn’t usually engage.