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services, and loans for cooperatives. Recently, FEHCAFOR participated in the work

group which drafted the proposed new forestry law which is awaiting approval by the

Honduran government. The federation was also given a grant from the Ford Foundation

to be used for institutional strengthening and training for the cooperatives.

Development projects financed by foreign governments such as the United States,

Germany, Canada, Finland, and the Netherlands also influence the Social Forestry

System greatly. The focus of many recent projects has been developing management

plans and training cooperative members in timber harvesting and wood processing. For

many groups, this has been a departure from the status quo of working only in resin

tapping. This and the myriad of other problems in these communities have been an

enormous challenge for the projects. Within the realm of the international development

projects, there are as many different approaches to working with social forestry groups as

there are projects. They have experienced varied levels of success.

EMCAH (Honduran Agroforestry Cooperative Marketing Association) was an

idea promoted by the FAO/Netherlands-sponsored project ADECAF. The concept

stemmed from the difficulties experienced by the cooperatives in marketing their

products. EMCAH is a forest products marketing company owned by a group of

agroforestry cooperatives. EMCAH buys resin and lumber from the cooperatives and

sells them domestically or internationally. The company seeks to ameliorate the

problems normally encountered by cooperatives in marketing their products. EMCAH is

able to concentrate its efforts solely on selling what the cooperatives produce and at the

same time have a stronger negotiating position than individual cooperatives would have

acting alone.


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