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April 5, 2023
Grain terminals

FMO, FinDev Canada and Rabobank support Argentinian agriculture sector through USD 80 mln syndicated facility to Asociación de Cooperativas Argentinas

Press Releases

The loan was provided to Argentina’s largest grain originator and agricultural inputs supplier.

Expected Development Impact

Market Development

  • Strengthening agricultural supply chains: With operations in 12 inner provinces and 600 towns, ACA has an important footprint throughout the agricultural supply chain of Argentina. Furthermore, it contributes to global food security, given Argentina is the fourth‑largest grain producer and third‑largest exporter in the world. Reaching some 43,000 smallholder farmers through 139 associated cooperatives ACA facilitates farmers’ access to products, such as agricultural inputs, and services, including logistics (transportation, administration, storage, conditioning), origination and exportation of agriculture commodities. This is made accessible through ACA’s extensive transportation and logistics network and the partial ownership of the national railway of Argentina. The streamlining and scaling of operations provided by ACA reduces overhead costs and time constraints for farmers, increasing their productivity and, ultimately, incomes. To further support its members, the Company offers advisory services to educate farmers on agricultural best practices and production optimization. In addition, the Company extends its offerings to non‑member farmers in remote areas where there are no cooperatives. 
  • Improving equality in access to products and services: To improve access to vital sector‑specific information for its members and other parties ACA developed tailored online platforms. The main platform (ACA Base) provides a management system for cooperatives, producers, clients, and suppliers, while the digital application (ACA Mi Campo) collects and aggregates users’ economic, agronomic, and technological data, to identify successful crop management methodologies and facilitate the exchange of best practices. ACA also offers an agricultural market online shop (ACA Market) to simplify commercial exchanges between local producers and buyers.  
  • Supporting quality local employment: In 2022 the Company had 1,848 permanent employees, receiving benefits such as medical coverage, including for their families, parental leave, and pension fund contributions. The Company offers educational opportunities to its employees, and competitive starting salaries for new employees. Furthermore, in a strategic effort to expand working opportunities to people with disabilities, ACA designed the Port Terminal in Timbúes with accessibility features (e.g., elevators, ramps, touch‑sensitive indicators) and hired 12 persons with disabilities, who now represent 20% of the Port’s full‑time workforce

Supporting women smallholder farmers

ACA offers a variety of capacity‑building and educational trainings on topics such as leadership, management, sustainability, and community engagement, specifically developed for women in the agriculture sector of Argentina.

Women's Economic Empowerment 

  • Supporting women smallholder farmers: ACA, through the Nodos Foundation, offers a variety of capacity‑building and educational trainings on topics such as leadership, management, sustainability, and community engagement, specifically developed for women in the agriculture sector of Argentina. The program is meant to equip women farmers with tools and resources to successfully operate their farms, strengthen their role within cooperatives, and exchange on best practices. The Nodos Foundation regularly surveys the participants in order to improve their offerings in meeting specific needs of women farmers.
  • Ensuring gender‑inclusive recruitment: ACA enforces inclusive recruitment practices through, for instance, gender‑neutral HR marketing and gender‑sensitive recruitment processes

Climate Action

  • Promoting sustainable agriculture practices: ACA provides smallholder farmers and cooperative members with access to tools, resources, new technologies, and advisory services to promote sustainable agricultural practices and help them adapt to climate‑related risks. Furthermore, the digital application ACA Mi Campo uses satellite images with information about the environment (e.g., soil moisture data, weather predictions) to help farmers improve their production. Through this application, data from farmers can be collected and shared for crop traceability and use of supplies, such as the amount of fertilizer and input used, and the yield of each plot of land. This is an especially useful feature for farmers in a country with large territories subject to extremely diverse weather and agricultural conditions. 
  • Tracking greenhouse gas emissions: ACA is a member of the Argentine Carbon Neutral Program, which promotes carbon footprint quantification, among other activities. Hence, the Company tracks and reports its Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions, and undertakes periodic audits.