Fair trade: ethics at the heart of what we do

This year, Fair Trade Week runs from October 5 to 15. As you undoubtedly know, fair trade is at the heart of everything we have done since Alterfin was founded in 1994. Today, two-thirds of our partners in the agricultural sector have this certification. A long-term approach We chose fair trade because it’s a particularly effective tool with which to improve the living conditions of smallholder producers . The central tenet of this system is the guaranteed minimum price negotiated by our partners with their buyers. “For the past four years, smallholder coffee producers around the world have

B Corp: recertification that makes sense

At Alterfin, we’ve just successfully completed the B Corp recertification process. Of course, we’re pleased with this result; it confirms that our approach is the right one and that our continuous improvement process is effective. A certification of value(s) B Corp is not like other certifications. Instead of focusing on financial or management criteria, it looks at a company’s undertakings and results when it comes to the environment, social responsibility, and governance . It’s a holistic approach that assesses the ethics and behavior of a company’s interactions: with its customers, its

Vacancy: Africa Investment Manager (M/F/X)

About Alterfin Created in 1994, Alterfin is a cooperative company aiming at the promotion of sustainable development and the improvement of living conditions of socially and economically deprived people and communities worldwide by financing microfinance institutions and sustainable agriculture organisations in low and low middle-income countries. The Alterfin team consists of 24 employees and 12 external consultants working in different countries in Europe, Latin America, Africa and Asia. About the position Alterfin is looking for an Investment Manager to supervise its African partners in

The crucial role of our Investment Managers

Time to shine a light on a position that is essential for us to carry out our missions: the job of Investment Manager. Our Investment Managers identify, screen and build our investment portfolios in developing countries. Thanks to their meticulous work, we can provide rapid assistance to many SMEs and producers in rural areas, who are all too often forgotten by traditional financing systems. Helping us shed some light on this painstaking work is Michael Mussau, one of our Investment Managers based in Africa, who took the time to answer some of our questions. What are the tasks of an

How Do Alterfin Shares Add Value?

‘Give more value to your money’: this is the message given by Alterfin for those who wish to invest their money ethically. But in what way do Alterfin shares add value? Alterfin currently deploys EUR 98 million of capital from more than 6,000 co-op members in Belgium. This capital is invested in microfinance and sustainable agriculture – two sectors that contribute to sustainable development for socially and economically disadvantaged communities in the South by giving them access to fair financial services. An investment that is above all ethical With the investments it makes in the South,

Hand-Picked Partners

Once the capital has been raised, it needs to be invested into sustainable projects according to the sustainable development objectives set up by the United Nations (SDGs). Due to the nature of its activities, Alterfin contributes naturally to several SDGs. Thus, by supporting mainly micro-entrepreneurs and small producers engaged in sustainable and family agriculture, Alterfin reduces poverty, hunger and gender inequalities. Alterfin also works for decent work and sustainable economic growth that respects the environment. Here is a step-by-step description of the process Alterfin uses to

'Superfoods' Financed by Alterfin

Tara, chia, quinoa and more. These 'superfoods' are famous for their excellent nutritional value. In the past few years, Alterfin has expanded its range of agricultural products and started financing these superfoods. Let's take a quick tour of our financing rich in protein and amino acids. Alterfin finances 19 agricultural products. Although coffee and cocoa remain the most financed products, new items are being added to the basket. These newcomers include many 'superfoods', such as quinoa, chia, tara or different types of nuts. Quinoa is shooting up Alterfin has been financing quinoa from

Offsetting our Carbon Footprint

ANNUAL CO2 EMISSIONS PER FULL-TIME EQUIVALENT EMPLOYEE The environmental awareness of our cooperative is reflected even in its day-to-day practices. Specifically, the Alterfin team has adopted a sustainable approach to its internal operations. For example, we consume certified products every day, sort our waste and use recycled paper and ecological cleaning products, as well as opt for low-impact mobility. The recruitment of local staff in the regions where we operate, which has enabled us to considerably reduce our air travel, also illustrates our will to reduce our carbon footprint. Our

Long-term collaboration with BIO and EDFI AgriFI

▪ EDFI AgriFI and BIO each commit to finance the equivalent of EUR 3 million in USD to reinforce Alterfin’s sustainable agriculture and microfinance portfolios. ▪ EDFI AgriFI and BIO’s combined investment will provide Alterfin with long-term financing to support its expansion in Africa, Latin-America and Asia. The financing from BIO will likely also be accompanied by technical assistance, a first for Alterfin. Brussels, 17 August 2020. EDFI AgriFI (AgriFI), the Agriculture Financing Initiative funded by the EU, and BIO, the Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries, invested the

CADESA: sustainable cocoa production

In Belgium, chocolate is a part of everyone’s daily life. This delicious treat can be found in every cupboard. A huge range of products is available, sold everywhere from supermarkets to Belgium’s famous chocolate shops. Indeed, consumers may well assume that its production is consistent and stable. However, passionate industry advocates have warned of threats to quality cocoa production for several years. Various issues have been widely discussed, including climate change, growing global demand (with Asian countries among chocolate’s new consumers), and local economic reasons. The cocoa
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