This profile was prepared when Victor Suárez Carrera was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 1996.
The New Idea
Víctor Suárez has developed a rural marketing system in which Mexico's dispersed and disappearing campesinos or small farmers can compete within the highly competitive globalizing economy and maintain an economically viable agricultural life. He has organized 70,000 basic grain producers into rural marketing enterprises in half of Mexico's 32 states. Together they build the tools and the framework to challenge a monopoly of politically powerful buyers. The system develops conditions of efficiency and professional management and establishes new relationships among the producers, who participate democratically in the whole process of production, marketing and benefits.
In contrast to many critics of globalizing markets, Víctor has focused his efforts on accepting the reality of a global economy. He has done the work of creating specific mechanisms for small-scale farmers to accept the challenge and create a new economic space for themselves within a marketplace dominated by mass production. It is the only marketing option of its kind for grain producers in Mexico's peasant sector.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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