The Horticulture subsector in Honduras, has around 10 000 small producers whose produce is sold intraditional markets, supermarkets and throughout the Central American regional market, as well as exported outside the region.
The work of the Horticulture Value Chain Committee has prioritised potatoes, onions and organic vegetables for the domestic market; sweet potato for export to Canada; chili and tomatoes for supermarkets and export to El Salvador. In addition, a quality system has been developed for fruit and vegetables using the "Honduras Premium" brand, together with a price information system via SMS (AGROCEL). Techniques for protected agriculture and water management have also been spread.
Training programmes were introduced to ensure compliance with quality and innocuity standards and the use of Good Farming Practices and personal protection equipment, enabling them to meet the quality brand requirements and thus respond to the demands of today's consumers with healthy, innocuous products of superior quality, and thus increase their sales.
Organic Vegetable Production
There is a dearth of organic vegetables in the domestic market, therefore in order to establish a pilot project, Pymerural provided help to the company Alimentos Sanos Orgánicos de Productores de Lepaterique (ASOPROL) in implementing organic vegetable production systems with its partners and independent producers in the buffer zone of the Yerbabuena nature reserve, one of the main sources of water for the cities of Tegucigalpa and Comayagüela, a region in which conventional horticulture is still dominant; ASOPROL sells the organic vegetables in Wal Mart, produces organic seedlings under glass, is organically certified, makes organic inputs and possesses the infrastructure necessary for post-harvest handling and refrigerated transport. It is a farm-school that has provided training services to 229 farmers in Honduras, Nicaragua and El Salvador.