Margarita is a program developed to strengthen dairy farming in Mexico by consolidating resilient business models and farming systems.
Mexico has a milk deficit of 39% and is the world's largest milk powder importer. Family farms with less than 60 dual-purpose cows represents 40% of the milk produced in the country. These small milk producers face several obstacles to connect to higher value markets, such as their low technification, quality and productivity, in addition to the effects of climate change and high selling price volatility.
In 2010, the Danone Ecosystem Fund, Danone de Mexico, and its local partner TechnoServe joined forces with the Government of Mexico to co-create Margarita project, that aimed at improving milk production in Mexico. In June 2019, the Interamerican Development Bank and Plataforma Nuup entered the program.
The project contributes to help develop sustainable businesses, support rural development, and improve the quality of life of small producers, while securing milk procurement in the region. The project trains farm technicians at Mexico’s top university, UNAM, and together with the Union of Cattle Farmers creates a network of smallholder farmers, consolidating an organizational model with cooperative values. The program eases access to a wide range of services such as credit, training, technical assistance, innovation and investing in common goods.
An alliance was created with strategic partners to make up the “Milky Club”, that is, the alliance of wills, knowledge and human or financial resources that make the strength and innovation of Margarita project.
Margarita has supported the development of more than 500 small-scale low-income dairy farmers, allowing them to move from basic production practices in an unstable and unreliable market, to a more prosperous scenario.
Under the photo, some of the project's ambitions.
To learn more about the project:
Farmers trained by 2023
jobs created by 2023