Nariño & Cauca, Colombia

Listed as one of the most "megadiverse" countries in the world, Colombia boasts a rich complexity of ecosystems for biodiversity conservation.

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About Colombia

Helping small-scale farmers since 2014 who are dependent on coffee production to regenerate ecosystems and create climate change-resilient communities.


Over the last four decades, uncontrolled deforestation due to agricultural expansion in the Cauca and Nariño mountains resulted in fragmented forest patches with low ecological continuity and freshwater shortages during dry periods.

Coffee farms are set on steep slopes of land and highly vulnerable to soil erosion, landslides, and the proliferation of pests and diseases favoured by a deregulated climate. Smallholder farmers lacked the knowledge on incorporating and reforesting diversified and endemic species. Biodiversity in pre-existing shade systems was limited to banana trees, Gravilea and Inga species.

PUR partners with Nespresso, and the Federación Nacional de Cafeteros de Colombia (FNC), who implement and source planting materials from local nurseries for this project.

Beyond Tree Planting

Increasing Farmers' Knowledge

Through strong technical support and good agricultural practices, projects are designed to increase farmers’ knowledge of agroforestry and restoration practices, revenue diversification and food security.

Local Communities

Tools are provided to farmers and local communities so that they feel empowered to carry forward with the practices implemented, ensuring climate change resilience through forest restoration.

Resilient Coffee

Converting sun-grown coffee to shade-grown coffee is fundamental in creating a more resilient coffee supply chain.

Farmer Motivation

Farmers understand the effects of climate change; direct sunshine affects coffee production and facilitates the development of pests and diseases.

They want to keep the integrity of their environment by protecting the steepest parcels, water streams and forests. By complementing existing landscapes and coffee parcels with hedgerows, degraded lands are restored with native forest species, and the quality and quantity of coffee are preserved.

Cauca y Nariño

Since 2014, the Cauca y Nariño project has supported small-holder coffee farmers in addressing climate change while combating land erosion and extreme climatic events. In the past, coffee-grown landscapes in the Colombian Cordilleras faced uncontrolled deforestation due to agricultural expansion, increasing temperatures, droughts and heavy rain.

The project’s implementation of agroforestry practices in coffee landscapes has been successful in the prevention of deforestation. Pests and diseases that affect coffee yields, biodiversity loss, reduced pollination and water resources are addressed while promoting climate change mitigation and adaptation.

Cauca Caficultura Forestal

The Cauca Caficultura Forestal project was created in 2018 to support smallholder farmers dealing with land erosion and extreme climate events. This project focuses on older coffee parcels in a mountainous area where watershed and coffee-grown landscapes have been threatened by uncontrolled deforestation due to agricultural expansion.

A key partner of this project is the FNC, Local Coffee Growers Committee of Cauca “Not one more hectare of coffee without shade.”

An extension of the Cauca y Nariño project, Cauca Caficultura Forestal consists of implementing agroforestry practices in coffee systems, addressing poor farming conditions, regular pests and diseases which affects coffee yields, biodiversity loss, reduced pollination and natural pest control and lack of water resources. Farmers are supported in climate change adaptation and resilience.

"The benefit of the trees for the coffee is the shade and it helps me to meet the requirements of the quality of the production and I want to continue producing very high quality coffee!"

Hermes, Coffee Farmer

"I cannot imagine a coffee parcel without trees! I can see the positive impact on the soil and my coffee quality. I love being on my parcel and maintaining the trees. All my family is involved in the farm lifestyle."

Manuel, Coffee Farmer