Eterno-Verde, a unique funding mechanism, was created by Verde Ventures in 2000. The initiative builds upon a successful low-interest loan program that CI launched in Chiapas, Mexico, in 1999.
Eterno-Verde was created with $500,000 ($250,000 from Verde Ventures and $250,000 leveraged from EcoLogic Finance
- formerly EcoLogic Enterprise Ventures). With a loan-loss guarantee from the Starbucks Coffee Company, these resources are being invested in a three-year rotating fund to finance the costs of shade-grown coffee production for coffee farmers in Chiapas.
By providing price incentives and affordable credit to local farmers for growing conservation-oriented coffee, the program creates a direct incentive for farmers to participate in sustainable coffee production.
In addition to improved on-farm productivity, in the 2001-2002 coffee harvest, more than 1,500 hectares (3,700 acres) of on-farm forested land was set aside for permanent protection. These set-asides contribute to the restoration of El Triunfo Biosphere Reserve's 121,000-hectare (299,000-acre) buffer zone.