International partnerships : the effectiveness of partnerships between international organizations and fair-trade associations, a study case of El Ceibo cooperative in Bolivia
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Fair-trade and organic products are found more often in supermarkets and stores. The demand of products carrying the fair-trade certification is increasing and it becomes more often to see NGO’s and fair-trade associations to enter and compete in market segments where big companies and for-profit organizations pursue activities. It is interesting to see how associations of farmers and cooperatives compete in specific market segments with their products, most of them sourced from organic products. This master thesis analyzes a case of a cooperative of cocoa producers in Bolivia, whose products compete in a very specific segment of the chocolate industry: gourmet chocolates. This study case will use relevant theory regarding strategic partnerships, marketing management and entrepreneurship. Such theories will be used to explore and analyze how international partnerships work with associations of farmers in the Southern hemisphere, and the impact of their work on a cooperative of cocoa farmers, who arrived to a region on the border of the rainforest 30 years ago to produce cocoa beans, and now are a worldwide example of success on the production of organic and fair-trade cocoa beans and chocolates. The purpose of this thesis is to provide a glance into how this process is carried out and the effectiveness from international partnerships between development agencies and a cooperative in Bolivia that produces organic cocoa and chocolates under the fair-trade scheme.
Masteroppgave i økonomi og administrasjon - Universitetet i Agder 2011