One of the country’s most modern flour factories will be installed at the head office of the Presidente Tancredo Neves Rural Producers’ Cooperative (COOPATAN) in the Bahia Southern Lowlands. The investment for the construction resulted from a Technical and Financial Cooperation Agreement established between the Brazilian Economic and Social Development Bank (BNDES) and the Odebrecht Foundation.
First signed in 2009 and with a six-year term, the agreement covers investments in social, production, environmental and training actions for the Bahia Southern Lowlands Environmental Protection Area Mosaic Program for Development and Growth Integrated with Sustainability (PDCIS), supported by the Odebrecht Foundation and public and private partners.
COOPATAN is one of the institutions associated with PDCIS and seeks to guarantee income and quality of life for its associates, while also offering high quality products to its social partners and clients. The cooperative is focused on cultivating manioc and fruits, and in 2012, it inaugurated its Fruit Pre-Processing Unit. “Our work is essential for strengthening the chain of these products in the region,” emphasized Juscelino Macedo, Manioc and Fruit Cultivation Business Coordinator.
The new flour factory will help promote integrated and sustainable development, strengthening productivity and increasing the members’ monthly income. According to Macedo, it is estimated that the construction work will be completed in one year. “In addition to increasing the average monthly income for cooperative members by R$ 640.00, we will have a significant increase in the number of COOPATAN associates,” said Macedo. “We believe that in four years, the factory will allow for the addition of more than 100 new cooperative members.”
The production will meet the requirements for the certification of the cooperative’s own brands, as well as of those of the main supermarket chains that are partners of PDCIS and which sell its products at their stores.
BNDES’ support also made it possible to build the head office of the Build Better Professional Training Center, in Valença, and acquire machines, agricultural accessories and vehicles for the Bahia Southern Lowlands Heart of Palm Producers’ Cooperative (COOPALM). Additionally, resources were granted for the remodeling and expansion of the Igrapiúna (CFR-I) and Agroforest (Cfaf) Rural Family Homes – teaching units that offer training geared toward the region’s rural reality.