After four years of developing sector alliances and sharing technical expertise, the Sustainable Trade Platform (STP) in Colombia has contributed to the country becoming the global leader for sustainable coffee production (certified/ verified volumes 58% against 40% global average). Working on pre-competitive challenges, such as preventing the introduction of diseases, improving labour conditions or work force availability, the STP has also proven successful in going beyond sector fragmentation and spurring collaboration in the palm oil, flowers and banana sectors. Sector integration is also the means of finding sustainable solutions to plastic bag disposal in the banana sector in Peru and citrus sector challenges in Brazil.
Projects with the sugarcane sector in Brazil is another good example. The re-qualification programme to relocate ex-cane cutters made redundant from harvest mechanization was a sector initiative that was integrated into public policy. Sector collaboration also proved successful for raising awareness among consumers on how value is added along the entire supply chain by producing renewable energy, food, bio-plastics and packaging. Currently, integrating small sugarcane providers into mill certification seems to be the new challenge at hand.