Honduras: Smallholder Producers Receive Grain Processing Plant in Comayagua
Published on 2 April 2013

Vice President of Honduras María Antonieta de Bogran, the President of the Howard G. Buffett Foundation  Howard G. Buffett, WFP Representative in Honduras Miguel Barreto and European Union delegate Laurant Sillano inaugurated a modern grain processing plant that will benefit farmers and producers in the departments of Comayagua and Intibucá.

  fuente de vida processing plant SAN JERONIMO, COMAYAGUA. - This processing plant is located at the FUENTE DE VIDA Association in San Jerónimo community and will provide services to seven small local organizations that have a combined production capacity of 21,000 bushels of maize and 2,500 quintals of beans per year. Benefiting producers are from the municipalities in Comayagua, San Jeronimo and El Rosario.

FUENTE DE VIDA is a beneficiary organization from the Purchase for Progress (P4P) initiative of World Food Programme (WFP), which promotes increased agricultural production and sustainable access to reliable markets for smallholder and/or low-income farmers to ensure food security and improve their incomes and livelihoods.
WFP has strengthened 22 small farmer organizations in six regions of the country, benefiting over 11,465 smallholders. For FUENTE DE VIDA, WFP has invested over US $138,000 to strengthen the organization at the production, organizational, managerial and financial levels, including managing revolving funds and purchasing post-harvest equipment and infrastructure such as: a grain a sorter capable of 52qq /hour, a maize sheller with the capacity of 80 to 110 qq/hour, bag sealing machines, humidity gauges, a continuous vertical flow dryer with the capacity of 300qq per cycle (cycle of 8 hours), a metallic hopper grain dryer with the capacity of 300qq capacity, and a galley for grain processing.

Through P4P, WFP has invested over US $140,000 for smallholders from FUENTE DE VIDA in technology packages which include provisions for seed improvement, fertilizers, fungicides, herbicides and pesticides. The use of technology for maize and beans, including technical assistance, has led to the increased production of maize and beans by 90% and 120% for most producers associated with the organization

In addition to these efforts, investment of around US $12,000 in organizational strengthening through minimal office equipment has been provided.

These efforts have been reflected in the growing commercial capabilities of FUENTE DE VIDA. Up to date, purchase and sale agreements for basic grains have amounted to US $346,000 which includes 14,184 quintals of basic grains (more than 644 metric tons), benefiting families from the departments of Comayagua and Intibuca.

As part of the activities to strengthen the capacity of small producers' associations P4P has installed five grain processing centers (dryers) in various areas of the country which amounts to an investment of US $790,000. Each one was constructed by a national company selected after a national bidding process conducted by WFP and IICA, who technically defined each ones location in order to provide extensive services to producers from the country’s other six departments.

Grain processing plants are located at the following associations, not including a new plant that will soon be opened in Yoro:

ASOPRANO (Salama, Olancho) with the capacity of 900 quintals per cycle
UNIOPROL (Jamastrán, Paradise) with the capacity of 900 quintals per cycle
UNESSELL (Gracias, Lempira) with the capacity of 300 quintals per cycle.
UNIOYOL (Yoro, Yoro) with the capacity of 600 quintals per cycle
FUENTE DE VIDA (San Jerónimo, Comayagua) with the capacity of 300 quintals per cycle.
The processors can perform three daily cycles and work with chasuble rice, coffee or sawdust as combustible material, making them very inexpensive with a monthly drying capacity of about 270,000 quintals or 12,273 metric tons.
As part of the diversification and marketing strategy of grains in Honduras, from 2010-2012 WFP has acquired over 22,000 metric tons (440 million pounds) of maize and beans directly from smallholder Honduran farmers to be used for the programmes WFP implements in Honduras. With own funds and government funds these programmes include school meals; support for vulnerable groups; conditional food transfers for agricultural development, education and health; and emergency response and rehabilitation after natural disasters.
Investment in equipment, supplies, dryers, infrastructure and training by the Purchase for Progress (P4P) Project in recent years has been roughly US $9.8 million, with the support of WFP, the European Union and the Howard Buffet Foundation in the United States.
WFP Offices
About the author

Hetze Tosta


Hetze Tosta works as a Senior Public Information Assistant for WFP Honduras in Tegucigalpa.