The training consisted in transfer technologies to control the volume of fruit production and processing of production from harvesting, preparing the packaging of bananas to the logistics process to delivering to the buyer. These are simple technologies which were already applied in other regions of Brazil and the world, and consist in an essential link to the quality of the fruit that reaches the final consumer. However, for family farmers of União Bandeirantes, that means the introduction of mechanisms that control the production and improve the fruit quality through cares in the harvest that producers do not usually apply.
"Packing house" is a technical term that has no exact translation in Portuguese. Its definition means a place where fruits are packed to be delivered. In the case of bananas, is where the banana bunches are hung to be separated in smaller pieces and then the fruits are washed to be packing in boxes that are used in transportation until the consumer. The technology is simple, the cost is low, and is available to all farmers. Nevertheless, it was not practiced in the region yet.
The introduction of this system represents a fundamental change in the behavior of banana producers who live around Jirau Hydroelectric Power. The training initiative is an action of Time to Endeavor project in State of Rondônia, developed by Camargo Corrêa Builder, Sebrae and Camargo Corrêa Institute (ICC), which for two years has worked to create the necessary infrastructure to make possible, technically and economically, the production and commercialization of fruits produced by these communities in a correct, socially and environmentally sustainable way.
"The introduction of mechanisms of rural property management and the cooperative incentive for increase the income generation, as well as the transfer of technologies to increase productivity and control production within reach of all are fundamental goals of the project", explains Liah Sabino, manager of Time to Endeavor Rondonia.
The production control introduced in the action was a spreadsheet where producers must take weekly notes about the appearance of banana buds. The information must indicate that in around 75 days the plant will produce a bunch able to be commercialized. The cooperative Agrossustentável in União Bandeirantes (Unicoop) will have enough time to plan the production commercialization of its cooperated members when they received this information.
During the training the farmers reported their experiences about the lack of production control, as was the case of Nero Wendt. "Once I sold part of my production to a middleman. I told him I would have about 70 bunches of bananas ready for harvest. But when I did the harvest, I saw that I had 200 bunches. For me this is a concrete of example how the lack of production control is detrimental", he said.
According Dulcinei Pereira da Silva, producer, the packing house system maintains the quality of the fruit, because is not hurt at the harvest process or in transportation. About the counting of bananas bunches, it seemed very difficult to do for him in a first moment. However, with the field day, he understood that make the production registration is very simple.
"Though planting bananas for years, I didn't know that a bunch needs 75 days to grow", he said. Damião José de Souza said that he will ask for help to all his family to make the weekly records of production, because he found that the count of bunches is so simple that anyone can do this.
Time to Endeavor Rondônia is a realization of Camargo Corrêa Builder, Sebra, Camargo Corrêa Institute in partnership with Emater, Porto Velho local government, Organização e Planejamento em Biodiversidade, Federal University of Santa Catarina, Sescoop, Embrapa, Trade Federation, Agriculture Federation, FCDL, Industries Federation, Facer, Finance Secretariat of Rondônia, Sedam, Incra, Ibama, Banco do Brasil, Banco da Amazônia, Caixa Econômica Federal, Sedes, Semagric, and Eletrobras Distribuição Rondônia, Seagri, SPU, Sema.
Photos and text: Gleice Mere/Sebrae-RO