CoopCerrado – Cooperativa Mista de Agricultores Familiares, Extrativistas, Pescadores, Vazanteiros, Assentados e Guias turisticos do Cerrado
This community network of over 4,600 families in Brazil’s Cerrado ecoregion exemplifies the sustainable use of a vulnerable ecosystem at large scale. CoopCerrado works with smallholders in a “farmer-to-farmer” method to sustainably harvest and process fruits, plants and seeds of the Cerrado, commercializing dozens of different certified organic products with creative marketing, elevating both the prestige of Cerrado products and local livelihoods for 26,000 people. Community monitoring prevents overharvesting, while restoration activities improve degraded ecosystems. The network manages an area of 124,000 hectares for sustainable use and was involved in the creation of two sustainable-use reserves. The success of the initiative in protecting biodiversity, addressing the climate crisis, and improving local livelihoods has led to its replication in five Brazilian states, showing the impact of community-based management and collective marketing.
Equator Prize Winner: 2021
Year of establishment: 2002
Location: Goias, Brazil
Ecosystem: Agricultural, Forests