Farmer to Farmer is a 501(c)3 nonprofit. We are located in Western Wisconsin with members throughout the U.S. Farmer to Farmer was founded in 1989 as a solidarity-based organization. Over the years we have worked in Nicaragua, Honduras, Ecuador and Guatemala.
Our current work is focused in Guatemala and Honduras. We work directly with family coffee farmers, buying their organic coffee directly for an above fair trade price. The profits from the coffee sales go back to the farmers and to help support various projects including school scholarships for students in Santiago Atitlan, Guatemala.
Our Volunteer Board:
Paul Helgeson, President
Donna Goodlaxson, VP/Secretary
Brenda Betz-Stoltz, Outreach
Arthur Kneeland, Newsletter
Joshua Reed, Local Outreach/Fundraising
Jody Slocum, Treasurer
Sally Ann Farrar, Organizational
At first, in the midst of the 1980s Farm Crisis in the United States, a group of Nicaraguan farmers traveled to Wisconsin on a speaking tour to share their experiences forming cooperatives. A group of Wisconsin farmers, who had already organized in response to the farm crisis, realized that they had a lot to learn from this group.
The Wisconsin farmers traveled to Nicaragua, and out of that experience Farmer to Farmer was formed. The vision of that early organization was to build friendship and understanding among rural people so that we might better understand our common struggles.
In 1989 Craig Adams, Lucy Altemus and their three children, Erin, Sam and Louis, went to Nicaragua for a year to help a cooperative there develop a dairy project. This experience clarified for Craig and Lucy the connection between U.S. foreign policy and economic and social conditions in Latin America.
And then, in 1991, Farmer to Farmer received a solicitation from a community of traditional Mayan weavers (Comite de Desarollo de Tejedores) in Santiago Atitlan, Guatemala, requesting assistance to resume farming after the devastating civil war in that country. Our support began with seed money and a visit.
Over the years we have connected community members to organic training and support, purchased farmland for the group, provided educational and scholarship assistance, helped build a weaving workshop and showroom in downtown Santiago Atitlan, and marketing the community’s textiles and beadwork in North America.
Farmer to Farmer envision agriculture that is sustainable and respectful of the earth, that remains in the hands of the people who live and work the land. We support grassroots agricultural projects that are democratically initiated and managed. We affirm the sacredness of the earth and work for and respect the rights of all peoples and cultures to self-determination.
We are a 501(c)3 nonprofit. For membership information and volunteer opportunities, please go to our get involved page.
What’s Happening Now
Currently, our focus is on scholarship support in Guatemala, coffee marketing, and work trips for cross-cultural exchange. See our travel page for more.