Choose your settings
Choose your language

Making sure farmers have the tools they need

We have been supporting the inclusive finance sector in rural areas around the world for 50 years. With a resilient agri-food system and increased food security, underprivileged populations are in a better position to improve their living conditions and better cope with the climate crisis.

Transformation of agri-food systems

Farming is the main source of income for 80% of the world's poor. Because our approach touches on the entire agri-food value chain, we create wealth and financial empowerment for agricultural entrepreneurs.

Desjardins International Development (DID) teams draw on their extensive agricultural financing expertise to carry out large-scale projects to restructure financial systems and better meet the needs of producers in emerging countries. Our interventions help reduce poverty, improve nutrition, curb hunger and address climate change.

An inspiring model for Colombia

Description Transcript
An inspiring model for Colombia

 1 min 40 s | Added on November 4, 2020

Listen to testimonials from local stakeholders to find out how Desjardins International Development contributed to Colombia's agricultural sector.

An inspiring model for Colombia

Note: The information in brackets describes the audio and visual content of the video that is not dialogue or narration.


[DID team members from Colombia posing for a photo with their Quebec team members at Complexe Desjardins in Montreal]

[On-screen text: Desjardins: An inspiring model for Colombia]

[On-screen logo: Desjardins International Development]

[DID Colombia visitors talking with their Quebec hosts]

[On-screen text: Dairo Estrada, Finagro]

Dairo Estrada: Through DID, Desjardins has played an instrumental role in Colombia over the past 4 years.

[On-screen text: Carlos Fadul Niño, Banco Agrario (Agricultural Bank of Colombia)]

Carlos Fadul Niño: Desjardins helped us build a new credit model that we were thrilled to implement in Colombia.

[Quebec hosts usher their visitors into the DID offices in Lévis]

[People talking during a team meeting]

[On-screen text: Paula Andrea Zuleta Gil, Ministry of Agriculture]

Paula Andrea Zuleta Gil: DID and Desjardins gave me a much better understanding of how to serve farmers.

[Presentation to a group of about ten people in a Desjardins 360d space]

Paula Andrea Zuleta Gil: I now realize that financing the agricultural sector is about much more than credit.

[The Colombian team visiting Maison Alphonse-Desjardins and attending a presentation at the Espace Desjardins]

Paula Andrea Zuleta Gil: Desjardins helped us put farmers at the heart of public policy.

[Cut to Carlos Fadul Niño]

Carlos Fadul Niño: It's by far the biggest transformation that Banco Agrario has taken on in recent years.

[Various shots of Colombia: the financial institution Banco Agrario, workers, farmers, a woman from Banco Agrario making a presentation to several people]

Carlos Fadul Niño: We are now bona fide advisors for our clients.

[Cut to Dairo Estrada]

Dairo Estrada: When Desjardins launched the PASAC project in Colombia, I was skeptical.

[Various shots of Colombia: fruit trees, cow and farmer, fields, Banco Agrario representatives with people and citizen meetings]

Dairo Estrada: We've had international cooperation projects here before, and most of them left very little behind.

After 4 years, I'm happy to admit that I was wrong. We've learned a lot from this project, and we're ready to move forward with renewed strength.

[Professionals and citizens in a banana tree plantation, in a financial institution, in group presentations and in work meetings at PASAC offices]

[On-screen logos: Government of Canada and Desjardins International Development logos]

[Desjardins jingle]

[On-screen logos: Desjardins]


Making sure the agricultural sector is more inclusive, efficient and safe

In response to the growing demand for food products around the world, we're focused on building strong agri-food systems based on local production.

Improving access to agricultural financing and financial services in rural areas

  • Develop innovative financial products adapted to an agricultural clientele
  • Bolster the financial empowerment of clienteles considered more at risk, including women, youth and small-scale agricultural producers
  • Promote the financial inclusion of farmers by setting up guarantee funds for agricultural loans
  • Implement inclusive digital financial solutions

Building a sustainable agri-food system

  • Encourage farmers to form organizations or associations for better integration
  • Provide resources and technologies in line with sustainable development goals
  • Enable farmers to obtain fair prices for their crops
  • Help develop agricultural policies that support the agri-food system

Promoting rural entrepreneurship and innovation in agriculture

  • Expand financial education program
  • Facilitate access to material and financial resources
  • Provide farm financing tailored to local needs
  • Support agricultural business owners with their innovative projects

Developing climate-smart agriculture

  • Promote new technologies adapted to the changing climate
  • Increase financial institutions' ability to offer financing based on sustainable best practices
  • Promote crop diversification, soil revitalization, ecological agriculture and family gardens
  • Support the marketing of local products

Food security and agricultural development

A well-functioning agri-food system is also one that addresses the root causes of poverty and hunger. Food insecurity particularly affects rural women and youth, who make up a large proportion of the agricultural workforce, yet lack control over resources.

By strengthening food systems around local production, our interventions contribute to shortening and diversifying food chains, providing better access to healthy and fresh food, revitalizing communities and reducing food waste.

By effecting a transformation that is economically, socially and environmentally sustainable, the agricultural sector in developing countries will be able to ensure better nutrition, alleviate hunger and reduce poverty.

Projects supporting inclusive finance in rural areas

AVETI project in Haiti

Promote the improvement of living conditions through sustainable practices

This project aims to sustainably increase the value of cacao, yam and other crops mainly overseen by women to ensure their financial empowerment and food security for their families.

Through the project, I received agricultural training and became a member of a village savings and credit association, which helped me save money and obtain credit. The loan I received has allowed me to build up my small business, become self-sufficient and take care of my children.

Marie Anglesanne Oscar

AVETI project beneficiary

FARM project in Mali

Structuring the agricultural financial sector

Now completed, the Agricultural and Rural Financing in Mali (FARM) project strengthened the capacity of financial institutions and agricultural production to increase food security.

FARM's financial literacy training has helped me come to understand that one of the ways farmers can avoid financial stress is to diversify farm income sources. So I adopted market gardening in addition to my existing corn production operation. The income from this side business helps me pay my bills and even save a little. I can now help my husband with family and farming business expenses.

Habibata Diawara

FARM project beneficiary


Discover our other areas of expertise

Empowering women and promoting gender equality

Promoting gender equality and empowering women

Supporting entrepreneurs

Supporting entrepreneurs

Helping young people take their place

Helping young people take their place