North America

Solidaridad North America is the face of the Solidaridad Network throughout the region. We develop relationships with North American partners to facilitate the creation of socially responsible, environmentally sound, and economically viable commodity supply chains globally.

Region North America

North America is a major market for agricultural commodities. Companies, foundations, and institutions across the continent are increasing their commitments to support sustainable agriculture and promote resilient economies. Solidaridad North America partners with such organizations to further sustainability goals in developing regions around the world.

  • Developments

    Climate change, increasing water scarcity, demanding customers and shareholders all signal the need for production and consumption systems that safeguard the environment, ensure the well-being of communities, and respect the bottom-lines of companies.

    Governments, businesses, and consumers are becoming increasingly conscious of the need to create food systems that increase production in a sustainable manner, while addressing poverty and food insecurity. North American consumer goods companies facing challenges in their supply chains are working towards ethical and sustainable sourcing of commodities.

    Food safety, traceability, waste reduction, and the integration of digital technologies to improve food production are also rapidly gaining attention. Yet recent political developments in the USA make this a challenging time and Solidaridad is redoubling its efforts to further development of sustainable systems from farmer to consumer.

  • Challenges

    International consumer goods companies are making commitments to sustainable sourcing and producer support. However, making the commitments is often easier than implementing the steps necessary to achieve them.

    Solidaridad North America, in close collaboration with the entire Solidaridad Network, helps companies achieve these goals by providing on-the-ground expertise and by developing innovative solutions to supply chain challenges. Together with philanthropic foundations and civil society organizations, Solidaridad North America identifies opportunities to increase the sustainability of commodity supply chains and mobilizes resources to achieve sector-wide change.

  • Achievements

    Since its establishment in 2012, Solidaridad North America has developed partnerships with philanthropic foundations and companies to implement innovative supply chain programmes for commodities such as cocoa, coffee, cotton, livestock, palm oil, soy, and sugarcane in countries as diverse as China, Brazil, Indonesia, Ghana, Mexico, El Salvador, and India.

    These initiatives have focused on protecting degraded ecosystems, while simultaneously improving the livelihoods of small producers, through capacity building for improved production practices, and facilitating access to finance and markets. A special emphasis on women and youth is integrated across all commodity programs.

    Solidaridad has well-established relationships with foundations such as the Mastercard Foundation, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the Walmart Foundation, and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and corporate partners such as PepsiCo.

     

Programmes Regional commodities

Solidaridad North America’s activities focus on building partnerships with North American stakeholders, mobilizing resources and raising awareness about the Network’s global programmes.

  • Livestock, Soy

    Protecting forests

    With the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation’s support Solidaridad developed a comprehensive strategy for sustainable agriculture approaches to reducing deforestation and avoiding extensive agricultural expansion in the Gran Chaco biome of South America. This work, undertaken by Solidaridad South America with support from Solidaridad North America, helped to shape a comprehensive multi-stakeholder approach: the Collaboration on Forests and Agriculture.

  • Cocoa

    Empowering young farmers

    Solidaridad North America led the development of a partnership with the Mastercard Foundation, implemented by Solidaridad West Africa, as part of the Foundation’s Youth Forward Initiative. The $15 million, five-year, MASO  programme focuses on youth empowerment in the cocoa sector of Ghana. Solidaridad North America also serves on the steering committee of the Youth Forward Initiative.

  • Palm oil

    Increasing yields and incomes

    Funding from the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, secured by Solidaridad North America, is supporting Solidaridad South and South East Asia’s programme on palm oil production in Indonesia that will increase yields and incomes of smallholder farmers, while avoiding both deforestation and associated greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Cotton

    Supporting female farmers

    The Walmart Foundation’s Global Women’s Economic Empowerment Initiative supported a programme that complemented the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) training to address the needs of female farmers in China. Together with improving cotton production practices, the programme, implemented by Solidaridad China, focused on strengthening the leadership and entrepreneurship skills of women cotton farmers.

  • Sugarcane

    Improving worker health

    The Kellogg Company supported Solidaridad in developing training materials to address the causes of Chronic Kidney Disease from non-Traditional causes (CKDnT), an epidemic affecting sugarcane cutters in Central America. This is part of a much larger initiative, funded by the Dutch Postcode Lottery, to attack the root causes of the disease. PepsiCo and Solidaridad’s partnership in India is promoting better farming techniques and water-saving practices that are improving the productivity and livelihoods of sugarcane farmers.

Partners Multi-stakeholder initiatives

Solidaridad actively engages businesses, foundations, governments, and civil society organizations in North America to develop and implement collaborative, innovative solutions for sustainable smallholder agriculture in developing countries.

  • The Nature Conservancy

  • Gordon & Betty Moore Foundation

  • Walmart Foundation

  • The David & Lucile Packard Foundation

  • PepsiCo

  • Mastercard Foundation

  • Kingdom of the Netherlands

Track record North America through the years

Solidaridad North America supports programmes implemented by our colleagues in Solidaridad’s regional centres in Africa, Latin America and Asia.

  • 2016

    Small but effective – that is Solidaridad North America in a nutshell. With a lean team, Solidaridad is punching above its weight in terms of proposals developed and relationships managed. In 2016, Solidaridad developed proposals in collaboration with all regional centres in the Network, strengthened its connections across North America and managed relationships with both current and prospective supporters and partners.

  • 2015

    Solidaridad North America continues to develop significant partnerships with companies, foundations and government agencies, engaging in an ever-widening range of activities. The highlight of the year was the consummation of a partnership with the MasterCard Foundation to implement a five-year, $15 million youth empowerment programme in the cocoa sector of Ghana, starting in 2016.

  • 2014

    Solidaridad has grown into its role as an adviser to North American consumer goods companies and private foundations on issues including sectoral trends, multi-stakeholder initiatives, opportunities and risks within supply chains, and we continue to form partnerships to achieve sustainability targets.

  • 2013

    Together with establishing its presence in North America, Solidaridad establishes a partnership with Walmart Foundation to support female cotton farmers in China. Solidaridad also builds relationships with several networks and civil society organizations, including the Tropical Forest Alliance 2020.

  • 2012

    The North America office is established as a legal entity in the United States, enabling Solidaridad to engage strategically with key market players and institutions across the region. Focused on partnership building, the office will support network-wide activities designed to promote sustainable land use and strengthen commodity supply chains.

Join us Connecting the world

We are always looking for partners to help us expand our reach and increase our effectiveness throughout the world. If sustainability is important to you (and it should be!) please contact us.

Partner

Related News

  • China’s “left behind” women are moving ahead

    Wenshu Zhao, a cotton farmer from Wangdaozhaier village in China, never thought she’d become an entrepreneur. Her farm in Hebei province wasn’t very profitable. She had never stepped out of her village. But, when she participated in a Solidaridad project to strengthen the leadership and entrepreneurial skills of cotton farmers like herself, she got the opportunity to visit other villages.

    Read more

  • Blog: From aid to investment with climate and migration as drivers

    Solidaridad has always strived to be at the forefront of sustainability innovations. But the world is changing quickly and needs new approaches that also address growing challenges like climate change and migration. Solidaridad is again adapting its programmes for a future where investments are quickly becoming an effective and lasting contributor to positive impact.

    Read more

  • Blog: Making A Difference - the impact of a small investment

    In this blog, Solidaridad North America’s Managing Director Sebastian Teunissen emphasizes the value of small, but timely investments in smallholder farming to secure both the livelihoods of farmers and the future of farming.

    Read more

  • Solidaridad launches new approaches for sustainability in 2016

    During a turbulent year with many changes in the geopolitical sphere, Solidaridad and its partners united to improve the livelihoods of close to 700,000 producers working on around one million hectares of land.

    Read more

  • Solidaridad Network 2016 Annual Report

    During a turbulent year with many changes in the geopolitical sphere, Solidaridad and its partners united to improve the livelihoods of close to 700,000 producers working on around one million hectares of land.

    Read more

  • Blog: Ethical Branding - overpromise and underdeliver?

    In this month's blog, Solidaridad Executive Director Nico Roozen takes a look at the history and pitfalls of sustainability labels which he has been directly involved in over the past 30 years. Find out more about the evolution of certifications and labels below.

    Read more

  • Contact Information

    Sebastian Teunissen

    Managing Director, Solidaridad North America

    2120 University Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94704 USA