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165. Tracking from farm to fiber

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Coop Name: Chetna Organic Farmers Association N° of Employees: 45
City: Hyderabad N° of Members: 15000
Country: India Year of formation: 2004
Website: http://www.chetnaorganic.org.in/aboutus.php Twitter: Link
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Chetna Organic aims to improve the livelihood options of small farming households in rainfed regions of India by making their farming systems more sustainable and more profitable. Chetna has developed an innovative strategy combining the strengths of collective action and creating a supply chain owned by the farmer. Chetna has grown from reaching 234 farmers in 2004 to a membership base of over 10,000 farmers in 2012.

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Photo Credits: Chetna Organic

Chetna Organic Agriculture Producer Company Ltd (COAPCL) is a wholly farmer owned cotton and food crop trading company that works with small and marginal organic farmers and focuses on the marketing of agricultural produce grown by its member farmers. The Chetna Program has been operating since 2004 and today works with over 10,000 farmers spread across the states of Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Orissa.

“Chetna’s motivations are to foster co-operation amongst communities, promote self-reliant agricultural practices – through organic farming – and develop ethical market linkages.” Rama Krishna Yarlagadda, Executive Director, Chetna Organic

COAPCL works in close co-ordination with its partner organization Chetna Organic Farmers Association (COFA) – a wholly farmer managed not-for-profit co-operative that provides training and capacity building activities for the farmers. Together, these organisations constitute the Chetna Program which is a unique intervention forming a 360 degree support service for small and marginal cotton farmers in rain-fed regions of India. Chetna’s motivations are to foster co-operation amongst communities, promote self-reliant agricultural practices (organic farming), and develop ethical market linkages.

The Chetna program empowers farmers to be able to meet stringent organic standards. Continuous certification training, extensive technical training and handholding, research on best practices, collective seed purchase, and seed research and multiplication all help create an enabling environment for the farmers so as to not make compliance a burden.

Chetna realizes the business of organic cotton needs to be part of a larger agenda of agroecology, food security and livelihoods and is committed to making investments in the farms and enabling policy changes in favour of smallholder agriculture.

For the full account of Chetna’s product integrity work please visit:
http://farmhub.textileexchange.org/learning-zone/organic-in-action/story-no-4

To download the Chetna case study on best practice please go to:
http://farmhub.textileexchange.org/upload/library/Case%20studies/The%20Chetna%20Story.pdf

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Textile Exchange
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