Tropenbos Suriname participates in non-timber forest products workshop

Tropenbos Suriname participates in non-timber forest products workshop

Suriname - 23 mei, 2024

“Solidarity can be an important element in our projects, strengthening the local economy and promoting a better income for local producers and sustainability,” says Rudi van Kanten, director of Tropenbos Suriname. From april 8 to 11, 2024, the organization participated in a regional workshop on business and finance for forest byproducts, organized by Tropenbos International in Bogotá, Colombia. Together with the Bolivian Institute for Forest Research (IBIF) and Tropenbos Colombia, and external experts, experience was shared about various agroforestry and community companies active in the forest economy. Fourteen entrepreneurs and community leaders from Bolivia, Suriname and Colombia attended this meeting.

The workshop offered participants from the Working Landscapes Program and Working Landscapes 1.5 the opportunity to exchange experiences and receive support on financial conditions, markets and business strategies to optimize project implementation. In addition, the capacity of teams from Bolivia, Colombia and Suriname was strengthened. The workshop also provided valuable information on obtaining financing and technical support for local entrepreneurs, providing insights into agroforestry systems and the importance of establishing local businesses for the development, conservation and revitalization of local communities.

The Working Landscapes program focuses on climate change mitigation and adaptation, contributing to the following interconnected aspects for climate-smart landscapes. More sustainable land use by small-scale and large-scale producers of agricultural and forestry products.

The first day of the workshop reflected on the activities of the Working Landscapes Program between 2019 and 2023, and the way forward, with each country presenting its case studies. Bolivia presented cases focusing on the production of copaiba oil and the processing of almendra chiquitana nuts. During her presentation, Suriname discussed the implementation of the Working Landscapes program in Suriname. Alingo Doekoe spoke about agroforestry, and the agro-cooperative Hatti Wa and Rinoa Lienga about the Association of Saamaka Communities (VSG) and the production path of women in the interior. On the second day, the case studies from Colombia were presented, including the production of honey from stingless bees supported by ACT Colombia, Oenocarpus bataua oil from the Comunidad Makabahë in Solano, Caquetá, and the women's craft group called Canasta de Abundancia. The women held an exhibition and sold their products to the participants. The morning session included a training module on finance, followed by an afternoon session on market identification and access.

“Tropenbos Suriname and its partners should strive to promote the relationship between academics and local communities, involving student volunteers. Participants should take the lead in sharing and applying the knowledge and experience gained.”

In the coming period, the organization will work with the entrepreneurs of Pikin Slee to set up a maripa processing factory in the village.

Published on April 16, 2024 on