Uganda: The Refugee Next Door achieves organic certification for pineapple farmers

Belgian company Kasana Fruits sources dried, organic-certified fruits and nuts produced in Africa (mainly Uganda and Burkina Faso) by local farming cooperatives. The company’s socially responsible business model supports farming and educational programmes in these countries.

To build a more inclusive and reliable pineapple supply chain, Kasana Fruits has successfully brought together 58 Ugandan pineapple producers into a farmers’ cooperative. This cooperative, which supplies most of Kasana’s pineapples and bananas, is supported by The Refugee Next Door (RND), a non-profit association that owns the Amani processing centre.

With the support of the EU-funded Fit For Market programme implemented by COLEACP, Kasana has been training and coaching members of the cooperative towards group organic certification. In July 2020, COLEACP experts carried out an initial assessment of the quality management system and internal control system, benchmarked against the Ecocert Organic Standard. COLEACP continued to work with Kasana to provide technical assistance and training, to the end of 2020.

In September 2021 the cooperative and RND successfully passed the audit and received their organic certification for vanilla and pineapple products. The Ecocert Organic Standard is recognised as equivalent to the provisions of regulation (EC) No 834/2007.

Through obtaining organic certification, RND aims to increase processing margins and exports. New drying technology, supported by Enimiro Uganda, will provide better drying ratios and product quality.

The social impact of the pineapple drying project and the associated schooling project can be estimated as supporting a total of 112 jobs, and directly benefiting 885 people.1

“The organic certification has been a huge milestone and I’m very thankful to COLEACP for its financial and human support in this. I’m looking forward in continuing our collaboration in the future.”
– François-Xavier Willaert, CEO, Kasana Fruits

Congratulations to RND, the cooperative, Kasana Fruits, and all those involved for this major achievement!


Jobs supported Estimation People benefiting
58 58 registered pineapple farmers under Amani certification x Ugandan average 5 people per household 290
40 Amani Pineapple Processing centre (10 employees) + 3 partner processing centres managed by Matinyi Jane 10 employees), Namubiru Rehema (10 employees) and Musafiri Juma (10employees) = 40 jobs x 5 people per household 200
14 At Amani school, 6 teachers + 8 staff = 14 jobs x 5 people per household 70
100 children at the school financed by the pineapple project represent 65 households x 5 people per household 325
112 Total 885

This activity is supported by the Fit For Market programme, implemented by COLEACP within the Framework of Development Cooperation between the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACPS) and the European Union, and co-funded by the French Development Agency (AFD).

Translate »