Sustainable Harvest International. Get yours at

Planting Hope
Restoring Forests
Nourishing Communities

-Sustainable Harvest International. What is all about?
Sustainable Harvest International (SHI) is a non-profit organization working with rural farming communities in Honduras, Belize, Nicaragua and Panama. SHI facilitates long-term collaboration between trained local staff, farmers and communities to implement sustainable land-use practices that alleviate poverty by restoring ecological stability. We work with local farmers, cooperatives, environmental organizations and indigenous groups that invite us into their communities. We provide these groups with long-term assistance adopting sustainable land-use practices such as reforestation, agro-forestry and organic farming. These practices allow rural people to raise their standard of living without clearing more forest.

The more than 1000 families working with SHI have planted more than one million trees and converted thousands of acres of degraded land to sustainable land-use practices, thereby saving tens of thousands of acres of tropical forest from slash-and-burn farming. Participating families enjoy increased income (up to 600%) from alternative cash crops as well as better health due to greater and more varied food crop production.

-What are actual/big/superior projects your doing/supporting?
SHI is involved with a wide variety of community-driven projects including reforestation, agro-forestry, micro-enterprises, organic gardening, crop diversification, improved family nutrition, community loan funds, renewable energy projects and finding alternatives to toxic and expensive chemical pesticides. We work with individual families as well as cooperatives, women’s groups and schools and each of our local staff members offers training and support to those participating in our programs according to their needs and goals. We also have some new volunteer projects that we are very excited about.

One of my favorite projects is our biogas digester program. What’s a biogas digester you ask? Well it is an amazing tool that families can use to harness the methane gas created naturally from decomposing manure and other organic materials. The digester is essentially a long plastic tube into which families pour water and manure mixed with other organic mater. As the material within the digester decomposes in an anaerobic setting, methane gas is released. The gas can then be tapped and used for cooking. Families use the methane to fuel a cook stove in their home greatly reducing the trees they have to cut down for firewood and the toxic smoke from open fires. One of our Honduran participants, Fransisco Sosa, says that she can cook for eight hours a day on the methane produced from her family’s digester. An added bonus is that the effluent from the biogas digester is also a powerful organic fertilizer.

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Sustainable Harvest International
September 2005
Surry, ME
I am:
non profit organization