Las Crucitas is a community located 90 kilometres away from Tegucigalpa, the capital of Honduras. There you can find a farm with the same name as the community; its owner, Felix Zelaya, a member of the Vegetales Lencas organisation, is seeing his dream of the last 3 years come true: the installation of a hydroponic system to produce lettuce in his farm.
Hydroponics is the practice of growing plants using only water, nutrients, and a growing medium. This system allows the producers to use less water, fewer nutrients and less soil. Furthermore, compared to the traditional cultivation system, it leads to an increase in productivity.
Felix started a pilot hydroponics project in 2019 in collaboration with Rikolto and ADA, a non-governmental organisation that supports small businesses. Together with the Honduras Agrocomercial Consortium, formed by 8 farmers' organisations, they decided to support and develop four farms producing lettuce, three within the organisation Lenca Vegetables and one within the organisation Horta. Both Horta and Lenca Vegetables are part of the Consortium.
This initiative reflects Rikolto's commitment to promote healthy and high-quality food production through inclusive business models in the city and region of Tegucigalpa. Rikolto’s work is geared towards strengthening the Consortium’s entrepreneurial, organisational and production skills and it has already led to great results. The Consortium is currently supplying 92% of products for one of the largest supermarket chains in the country, La Colonia supermarkets.