In addition, this integration is nearly essential for the long-term sustainability of resin
tapping because a tree can only be tapped for a finite number of years. Without logging
to encourage new regeneration of trees, cooperatives will eventually run out of trees to
tap. So the experiences of these groups can point out the obstacles, advantages, and
disadvantages cooperatives might face in their development.
The level of trust the author was able to develop with each cooperative varied.
For example, in working with the Cooperativa Guadalupe, the author had a high level of
trust with the cooperative members after living two years in the community and working
closely with the cooperative. Direct observation and participant observation were
instrumental in gathering data while working and living with the cooperative.
Conversely, in the case of the other cooperatives, the author had less time to interact with
cooperative members, and therefore had to rely on unstructured and semi-structured
interviews with cooperative members, as well as several informants outside the
cooperatives. The data was gathered during field trips of one to four days during which
the author stayed in the communities. The author learned about the other cases through
contacts made during the two years with Cooperativa Guadalupe and while working with
FEHCAFOR. In the case of Villa Santa and Protección, the author met leaders from
those cooperatives while a volunteer with Cooperativa Guadalupe and FEHCAFOR.
Using the same contacts, the author was formally introduced to leaders from Chaguite
Grande and Quebrada Honda. These primary contacts for each group were instrumental
in selecting informants and gaining trust in the groups. Sometimes the contact person
arranged time to accompany the author and give introductions to informants. In the case