4 Steps Towards Strong Farmer Organizations

Our organizational development approach builds efficient farmer organizations supporting coffee smallholder families to prosper. Farmer organizations should support farmers in strong marketing of their coffee but also are an important supporter for farm activities. That could include farmer-to-farmer extension, joint marketing of their produces, access to financial services or advocacy for farmers interests.

HRNS accompanies farmers during four steps of developing their own organizations. We guide them through developing basic structures, capabilities, registering organizations and becoming well managed.

1. Inception Phase

We support farmers to establish basic organizational structures and start to qualify the different actors for their tasks.

2. Learning Phase

We develop the capability of the members according to their roles and responsibilities within the farmer organization in order to formalize their organizations and start offering services to their members.

3. Consolidation Phase

we enhance the business skills, networking and management capacity for improved service delivery as demanded by members.

4. Strong and Professional Phase

We provide tailor made support to address remaining and specific requirements to maximize the performance as demanded by the organizations themselves

Ultimately, autonomous and financially independent organizations maximize value for their members. They are commercially viable and professionally managed. We have learnt that farmers’ organizations are important structures in the rural environment which play an important role for many aspects of rural development.

Professional farmer organizations take over the support provided by projects and are part of HRNS exit strategy. However, setting up these structure takes years as often a change in mind is required.

Our experience with building farmer organizations is reaching back to 2005.


“Together with several other coffee farmers we established a farmer group – Cooperativa Cafetalera Santa Fe Limitada (COCASFEL). We also belong to the second-tier organization UNIOCAFE (Unión de organizaciones Ocotepecanas de café). I sell my coffee through this organization. I now also have more access on trainings on good agricultural practices.”

Edgar Amilcar Levaron, Ocotepeque, Honduras

Some Facts About Organizational Development


Farmer Organizations

Total number of organizations we are currently working with.

Village Based Farmer Organizations

Percentage of village based farmer organizations we work with.

Bags of Coffee Sold via Farmer Organizations

In Honduras and Guatemala as part of Tim Hortons and ICP projects.

Hanns R. Neumann Stiftungs Organizational Development work is committed to contribute to achieving UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):