El Salvador

Overview

While El Salvador, the smallest country in Central America, has the region's third largest economy, poverty rates linger above 30 percent.

The country is seeking to create more jobs and income opportunities for the rural poor by boosting agricultural exports. For more than three decades, TechnoServe has been helping farmers in key sectors connect to high-demand markets, both local and foreign. TechnoServe also runs entrepreneurship programs that empower people to create thriving businesses in a variety of sectors.

Impact

Since 1975, TechnoServe’s projects have connected enterprising Salvadorans to buyers in the dairy, ethnic product and coffee industries and created thousands of jobs. TechnoServe supported 72 young entrepreneurs in rural areas through basic business training.

Stories

A Craft Business Blooms

El Salvador's business plan competition helps a committed entrepreneur to expand her handicraft business, bringing new economic opportunities to women in a struggling rural community.

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Grounds for Success

TechnoServe is helping Central American coffee groups such as El Salvador's BEXCAFE to increase rural incomes by tapping into premium coffee markets.

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Helping Small Fruit Farmers Become Exporters in El Salvador

With TechnoServe’s help, Beto Gonzales and his fellow jocoteros have turned a floundering business into a successful cooperative that provides Salvadoran migrants in the US with goods from their homeland.

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On The Ground

Projects

 

New Markets for Ethnic Products

TechnoServe helped small businesses export ethnic products to the sizable market of Salvadorans living in the United States. We worked with nine companies to improve their production, processing and export of traditional products such as pastries, frozen fruits, cheeses and other food items. The program also benefited rural farmers who produce the source materials needed by these companies. In addition, TechnoServe helped Salvadorans capitalize on remittances, which account for nearly 20 percent of the GDP, but are rarely used to fuel the growth of small and medium enterprises (SMEs), the key drivers of economic development. TechnoServe partnered with local and international microfinance institutions to identify ways to leverage remittances for this purpose.
 

Supporting Smallholder Dairy Farmers

TechnoServe, with financing from the Millennium Challenge Corporation, helped a group of dairy farmers and processing plants in northern El Salvador gain access to higher-paying export markets by improving the milking process, modernizing plants and establishing links with buyers. The program created nearly 1,000 new jobs over two years. The program emphasized two areas: improving opportunities for women and promoting environmentally-friendly farming and processing practices. We are also helping dairy farmers improve the productivity of their cows by producing low-cost, high-quality feed.
 

Building Coffee Growers’ Capacity

TechnoServe helped coffee producer groups become more profitable by growing and selling lucrative specialty coffee. Using tools such as traceability software and quality management systems, TechnoServe business advisors trained the producers in industry best practices. One of the core cooperatives has seen its production of specialty coffee grow sixfold over several years, with a proportional increase in jobs and a near doubling of employee wages.

Blog Posts

February 21, 2014

Photo of the Week: Remembering Ed Bullard

TechnoServe celebrates the spirit and memory of our founder.

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September 16, 2011

Photo of the Week: A Familiar Fruit

Farm workers in El Salvador sort through crates of jocote, a fruit native to Central America. A TechnoServe program assisted jocote farmers and other producers of native products to sell to the Salvadoran migrant community in the United States.

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July 1, 2011

Photo of the Week: A Fresh Roast

Reina Flores roasts a batch of coffee beans at the BEXCAFE cooperative in El Salvador. TechnoServe helped the members of BEXCAFE grow higher-quality coffee and increase their productivity, improvements that led to new jobs for the community and higher incomes for farmers.

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More Posts

Contact

TechnoServe El Salvador

Calle El Mirador, #5824
Col. Escalon
San Salvador, El Salvador

Tel: +503 2520 3200
Fax: +503 2520 3225

Roberto Vega Lara

Country Director
rvega@tns.org

Resources

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