Save Amazon, Revive the Forest with Japanese Multi-Win-Win System: Compatibility of Ecology and Economy through Agroforestry

We solve the serious problem in Amazon of devastation of forests by connecting Japanese unique business relationships with agroforestry.

Photo of Kazutaka Tokushima

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I confirm that I am fully aware of the eligibility criteria, and based on its description, I am eligible to apply to the CSV Prize 2017.

  • Yes, I'm eligible

Preferred language

  • English

Organization name

Fruta Fruta.Inc

Year founded

2002

Initiative stage

  • Growth (the pilot has already launched and is starting to expand)

Annual budget in 2017 (USD)

  • Over $5mil

Number of beneficiaries impacted so far

  • 50,000 - 100,000

Organization type

  • Social enterprise

Secondary Focus Area

  • Rural development
  • Nutrition

Headquarters location: Country

  • Japan

Headquarters location: City

Tokyo

Location(s) of impact

Japan:Tokyo, Kobe,Osaka  
Brazil:Amazon, Tomé-açu, Belen
Taiwan:Taipei
Thailand: Bangkok

Website

http://www.frutafruta.com/
 http://www.frutafruta.com/global/company/index

Facebook URL

https://www.facebook.com/fruta.acai

Twitter URL

https://twitter.com/frutafruta

Problem: What problem is this initiative trying to address?

In Amazon the area of forests has been seriously damaged by ruthless developments. Nearly 25% of the primeval forests has disappeared in past 50 years. They expect we will have lost 20% of the forests in the next 20 years, leading to the global warming.The deforestation and decrease of precipitation causes further drying. The disappearance of primeval area means the decay of the ecosystem of the area.
 We work on the problem as we think we are the party concerned ourselves, living in a developed, consuming country.

Solution Summary: What is the proposed solution? What do you see as its most promising aspects for creating shared value?

We buy a majority of the Amazon agroforestry fruits, that is, those produced by an agricultural system helpful for conservation of forests through great biodiversity, by way of Agricultural Cooperative, which buys out the crops produced by the members. As manufacturer we are responsible to create a market for amazon fruits in Japan.
According to our model, if we win the hearts of the consumers with our products, they should want to buy more food produced by good agriculture, companies have to sell good food produced by good agriculture. Local people tend to adopt agroforestry as more effective means of living. It results in the multi-win-win society where consumers enjoy good food and good health, local people enjoy higher standard of living, and we have profits from fair sales. It leads to conservation of environment, which should be one of the amazing gifts for our children and descendents all over the world. Our multi-win-win system keeps on circutating in Brazil and Japan.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Specify both the social and the environmental impact of your work

The impacts are:
1)through our initiative we expand the area of 5000ha to 20000ha,
2)the standard of living of the local people has been raised and the number of local people who are engaged in agroforestry has been increased,
3)the carbon dioxide has been reduced: according to our data, 7000ha of agroforestory area means 53000t of CO2 per year has been absorbed and stored in the trees, and
4)in Japan our success raise social concern for environment both in business and in
consumers. For example bigger companies are ready to adopt agroforestry materials in their own industries. Consumers come to understand we are responsible for the environmental crisis in Amazon. In addition, Japanese people become more concerned about how the raw materials are supplied. It is needless to say the new market of acai, one of the most popular Amazon fruits, emerged as promising items for market.

Financial sustainability plan: How is this initiative financially supported? How will you ensure its financial sustainability long-term?

For the most part, our business is supported by our sales. As manufacturer, we provide our customers with highest quality product with added value, using Amazon fruits as main ingredients. To create a new market of "unknown fruits" we have been focusing on promotion, including award events and demonstration at Embassy of Brazil in Tokyo. As a result, the Amazon fruits are now popular among Japanese people, especially women who are concerned with their health and beauty.

Unique value proposition: What makes your initiative innovative? How does your project differ from other organizations working in the same field?

We solve global environmental problem at the present time with traditional Japanese system of business, multi-win-win relationship with result of compatibility of ecology and economy.
We share the worldview with the immigrants who devised agroforestry in Amazon that we live under the protection of, in harmony with, nature with our own industry. We connects their ecological approach with current market. We base our business on our equal relationships with locals in Brazil and consumers in Tokyo.

Founding story: Share a story about the "Aha!" moment that sparked the beginning of this initiative.

20 years ago, he arrived at Amazon with worries that economy only led to destruction of nature. As far as he saw, there was only ruined land without trees or plants. He was shocked to doubt if development proved to be beneficial for locals.
In Tomé-açu, he happened to know the miraculous method of agroforestry, when he was so impressed that he thought it a solution to his agony. With agroforestry, we could restore green and forests gradually—while we provide them with economic benefits to let them live on themselves.
It took time to make relationship of trust with local people. Gradually some people began to speak to him.We talked about the crops. They talked about their unfortunate history of their parents coming from Japan who struggled to live in the wasteland and devised the agroforestry. We decide we would make the ftuits of their parents’ efforts maximize on a global scale.

Where did you hear about the Nestlé Creating Shared Value Prize?

  • Social media

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