Mercedes Chavez, Project Manager at Koltiva
Making connections for sustainable, traceable and climate-smart value chains: From beans to cups and candy
On March 24, 2023, Mercedes Chávez will introduce us to Koltiva, a Swiss/Indonesia-based company that connects small farmers and coops producing coffee, cocoa, and other cash crops with consumers in the Global North. Mercedes, who received a Master of Regional Planning from Cornell University in 2005, manages Koltiva’s Mexico portfolio. “More than ever,” she explains, “consumers want evidence that the products they buy support environmentally sustainable and socially equitable agriculture.” Koltiva’s aim is to build ethical, transparent, and sustainable supply chains, digitizing agribusinesses and producers to aid in the transition of sustainable production through traceable sourcing and focused capacity building on the ground. Their KoltiTrace platform allows businesses to connect with their upstream and downstream supply chains, allowing insight into provenance and total carbon impacts.
Ms. Chávez, lives in Tijuana, and has worked in community development and sustainable agriculture in the Global South since completing her Master of Regional Planning degree at Cornell University in 2005. Most of her work since then was in Indonesia, where her early projects focused on women’s rights and community development during the long recovery from the devastating Banda Aceh earthquake and tsunami (2004). After several years’ work with United Nations programs, Mercedes advanced the work of Indonesia-based Yayasan Masa Depan (JMD) (Building Bridges to the Future), where she focused on sustainable agriculture and farming combined with socio-economic empowerment of disadvantaged groups. She continued and expanded this work as Indonesia Country Representative for UTZ Certified (now part of the Rainforest Alliance) before returning to México in 2016.
If you are unable to attend in person, you can register for Zoom information here.
This series is presented thanks in part to the generous support of the Louis B. Wetmore Endowment Fund, which provides resources to bring planning practitioners to our department where they interact with students and faculty.