Coffee farmers applying water-smart agricultural practices
Hectacres of farms improved with water-smart farming practices
People with improved access to water services
Liters of water saved through improvements in coffee mills and water systems
Blue Harvest is a partnership led by Catholic Relief Services (CRS) to invest in farming practices that protect springs, rivers, and aquifers that provide people their drinking water.
Blue Harvest was launched in 2014 to scale up restoration, protection, and conservation practices in the territories where coffee is produced (coffeelands) in Central America. Blue Harvest promotes water and soil conservation practices in critical watersheds, and supports farmers to increase yields, improve quality, and gain access to high-value markets.
“The greatest potential to secure water for cities lies in improving the management of agricultural lands…”
A study of water sources in 500 cities around the world concluded that the most cost-effective way to protect water sources is to promote sustainable agriculture in source watersheds. (See TNC - The Urban Water Blueprint).
Blue Harvest partners with thousands of farmers in Latin America to protect and restore water sources that provide drinking water to hundreds of thousands of people. Our aim is to ensure that sustainable farming is viable and profitable for everyone involved in sustainable value chains.
Manuel García produces coffee, cocoa and honey in the San Benito community of the municipality of El Tuma-La Dalia, Nicaragua. Since 2014 he has been part of Blue Harvest and affirms that, "Best of all I created an awareness of caring for the environment, I could produce without going against nature..." Manuel manages coffee by-products (coffee pulp and wastewater) through a water-efficient water treatment system in the wet mill. Before, he needed nearly 60 liters of water to wash one kg of coffee, now he uses only 12 liters.
On-Farm Training and Technical Support
We provide training and expertise in water and soil conservation, soil fertility management, agronomy, and crop quality to increase farm profitability and climate resilience.
Water Resources Management
We monitor and measure water and soil resources using state-of-the-art hydrological and agronomic science, then share data through user-friendly maps and dashboards so that farmers and buyers to understand how their products impact on water resources: #knowyoursource
Linking Producers and Buyers
We connect farmers with buyers of high-quality and sustainable products, primarily coffee and cacao. We ensure that farm products meet the standards buyers expect.
Learning and Advocacy
Blue Harvest partners are committed to continuous learning and improving, by constantly sharing and engaging with researchers, businesses, and the public sector. We advocate for policies and practices that promote regenerative agriculture and protect water sources.
El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua and Honduras
Blue Harvest practices have proven cost-effective and successful on farms and watersheds across Central America and other regions of the world where agriculture impacts water resources.
Recharge - Blue Harvest blog
We connect farmers with buyers of high-quality and sustainable products. We ensure that farm products meet the standards buyers expect.