There’s no telling what will bring former President Bill Clinton and Canadian mining executive and philanthropist Frank Giustra together.
In 2004, it was the earthquake and tsunami that caused enormous damage to Indonesia, India, Thailand and Sri Lanka.
The next year it was uranium and business in Kazakhstan leading to their creation in 2007 of the Clinton Giustra Enterprise Partnership to address global poverty.
Most recently, it’s been peanuts.
The Clinton Giustra Enterprise Partnership has launched a corporation providing a supply chain for the production and sale of peanuts raised by farmers in Haiti.
As the United Nation’s Special Envoy to Haiti since 2009, Mr. Clinton is well acquainted with the country. During his administration, he engineered the restoration of Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide to power and forced the re-entry to their home country of Haitians who had fled to the United States.
On June 29, he was back in Haiti along with Mr. Giustra and representatives of the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.
UGA’s Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Collaborative Research on Peanut and Mycotoxin (PMIL) is a leading researcher in the field and has joined the Clinton Giustra partnership to launch the corporation that is designed to improve the livelihoods of more than 12,000 smallholder peanut farmers.
Its scientists Tim Brenneman and Bob Kemerait are providing the partnership with technical advice in peanut production.
The Acceso Peanut Enterprise Corp. was launched at a storage and service depot in the village of Tierra Muscady, one of 35 planned throughout Haiti’s central plateau and northern regions.
Aside from Mr. Giustra, Mr. Clinton was accompanied by Dave Hoisington, PMIL’s director; Jamie Rhoads, incoming assistant director and Christy Fricks, communications specialist.
“We are working to improve the production, quality and marketability of peanuts as a crop,” said Dr. Hoisington, a plant biologist, in a UGA news release. “We do this by developing high-yielding varieties of mold resistant peanuts and then training smallholder farmers on best practices for producing and marketing healthy crops.”
According to the release, the Acceso depot is to function as a site for training, point of sales for seed and storage and distribution for the community’s peanut farmers.
The five current Acceso depots are to supply peanuts primarily to regional buyers that include Meds & Food for Kids and Partners in Health, both of which manufacture peanut-based nutrition for children.