Alberto is also a wise man, whose opinion is held in great esteem in his community. When CleanStar started explaining the importance of soil health to local farmers, he was one of the first to connect the dots. He now practices conservation agroforestry and helps explain the company’s approach to other farmers in the community.
“We have the will because we will sell!”
It took some time to convince Alberto that CleanStar would actually buy cassava. Cassava is one of the only plants that grows easily in very degraded soils, but most farmers grow just enough for their family, because in the past those farmers who produced an excess were forced to watch it simply rot away.
But when the agroprocessing facility started being built up the road in Dondo, Alberto understood that CleanStar was going to be there for the long term, and became energized by the opportunity to sell his surplus crops.