Porsche and Michelin are committed to the sustainable extraction of natural rubber. The commitment of the car manufacturer and the tire manufacturer to transparency and better working conditions in the extraction of raw materials is evident from the CASCADE project (Composed Actions for Smallholders Capacity Development). This project is the first to involve the entire supply chain: small farmers and partners, a natural rubber processing company, a tire manufacturer and a car manufacturer.
In this program, Ksapa is responsible for designing and deploying capacity building efforts using its SUTTI solution to support Sumatran rubber growers. Capacity building is structured around three pillars: rubber productivity, diversification and social and human rights awareness. Ksapa and its local partners started training farmers in rubber cultivation in 2021.
In this post, Ksapa revisits the results of a qualitative impact assessment study conducted among farmers several months after they received training on rubber cultivation practices.
Indonesia is one of the most important rubber production regions in the world. Porsche and Michelin identified sustainability risks within the rubber extraction supply chain using the specially developed RubberWay app and by conducting discussions with market parties. Through this risk assessment, the Jambi priority area on Sumatra was designated as a starting point.
For manufacturers such as Michelin and Porsche, rubber is an important commodity because it is used in many different parts of their products. In this sense, long-term partners Porsche and Michelin have committed to supporting small farmers on Sumatran plantations in the extraction of rubber in collaboration with Ksapa. Through capacity building, farm diversification and biodiversity education, the aim is to achieve long-term improvements in the livelihoods of Indonesian smallholder farmers.
As such, CASCADE is one of the first projects in the world to start at the first mile of the natural rubber supply chain. The program aims to train 1,000 smallholder farmers through local partners to make extraction methods more environmentally friendly and efficient.
Supporting smallholder farmers using Ksapa’s SUTTI solution
Ksapa uses its SUTTI solution to calibrate and deploy CASCADE. SUTTI is a large-scale impact program that relies on a hybrid model for capacity building. Indeed, we combine personal and digital solutions to stimulate employee training and monitor our impact in the process.
Our goal is to build sustainable, real-world impact at scale by:
- Delivering know-how, practice change, sales increase, activity diversification and financial literacy to smallholder farmers.
- Improving and safeguarding responsible purchasing policy.
- Strategizing high-performance, impactful economic models to scale up programs.
Additionally, Ksapa’s in-house SUTTI digital suite maximizes access to training through an e-learning tool and tracks the program’s impact on social, environmental and economic performance objectives. This ultimately helps industrial groups better understand their purchasing map and gives small farmers control over their farms.
CASCADE Impact: Farmer-focused lessons for quick wins
FARMER-ORIENTED METHODOLOGY FOR MORE SATISFACTION
At its core, SUTTI is designed to enable small-scale producers to achieve greater resilience by providing vocational training on priority topics ranging from agricultural skills to health and safety, biodiversity, etc. The training provided is based on a thorough understanding of the core needs of small farmers. . This 360 degree, farmer-centric diagnosis and analysis is fundamental for the proper implementation of SUTTI projects.
During the diagnosis phase, Ksapa identifies and classifies interventions as quick wins or medium-term interventions. Quick wins are actions that do not require significant time or investment to be implemented by farmers and that provide benefits in a short time. It is critical to start the capacity building process with quick wins, building trust with farmers and then deploying more complex strategies.
The first training given by Ksapa and his local partner is therefore based on quick wins in rubber cultivation practice. The result of the survey – conducted among 95% of farmers (250) who had undergone training six months previously – is that 82% of them are satisfied or very satisfied with the training. This result should also be seen in comparison to traditional training programs, which typically have a satisfaction rate of up to 50 to 60%.
UNIQUE TRAINING METHODOLOGY FOR CONCRETE IMPACT
Ksapa’s training approach is also praised by the farmers in the study.
Indeed, the combination of tailored training content and adequate pedagogy with e-learning capabilities has proven to be highly influential in the adoption of practices among farmers. By working with local partners and Michelin, Ksapa was able to curate easy-to-understand and relevant content for farmers. Providing training in a hybrid format, using face-to-face and digital means, also allowed farmers to continuously delve into practices for maximum adoption.
The relevance of the insights learned helped farmers tackle unsolved problems. As such, the spread practices had a major impact on farmers, who quickly understood the value of such training. As a result, 96.5% of farmers applied at least one of the presented practices.
Farmers who adopted these practices had the opportunity to witness the positive effects for themselves after a few months. While this first training group focused on rubber cultivation and productivity, we noticed that farmers reported multiple impacts across different dimensions: economic, agronomic, health… This first qualitative impact study thus further proves the importance of such quick wins for farmers.
Many farmers in particular reported an improvement in yield soon after the training. In a specific question, 90% of farmers reported witnessing an increase in yield, with an average increase of 10%. Such a quick win is crucial for farmers as it is the first step in improving their livelihoods. Combined impact, such as higher yields with reduced use of intrants, further improves the profitability of their farms.
As market leaders, Michelin & Porsche have entrusted their sustainability efforts to Ksapa and its SUTTI solution. As a key raw material in many products, the ESG performance of natural rubber supply chains needs to be improved. Looking especially at certain growing areas such as Jambi in Sumatra, farmers face many challenges ranging from social and economic to agronomic.
In a joint development process with local and industry partners, Ksapa developed relevant and tailor-made training content for dissemination in the CASCADE project. Ksapa delivers lessons through a hybrid methodology that combines face-to-face and digital and was keen to get feedback on its methodologies. In this sense, this first qualitative impact assessment clearly proved the benefit of the training methodologies and the farmer-oriented approach. Building on early observed impacts and rapid wins, Ksapa and its partners will continue to work with farmers to create value and impact on a broader scale.