Soy Foods Production

Food, Environment & Health

Throughout all Plenty’s activities, we support the efforts of economically marginalized communities to provide for their own basic needs, promote local culture, and protect their natural resources.

In Guatemala and El Salvador, Plenty works with indigenous communities, womens’ associations, local universities, agricultural schools and other non-profit organizations to:

  1. address immediate nutrition and clean water needs of undernourished and vulnerable children and families
  2. help families increase and sustain production of essential, nutrient rich foods
  3. establish plantings of trees and bushes with erosion control and insecticidal properties and increase their use
  4. support local efforts to process and market fresh, quality, low cost non-gmo soy products and related high nutrient foods

Guatemala Programs and Partners

Through Karen’s Nutrition Program (KSNP) at the Guatemala City waste dumpsite, Plenty works with local residents to increase the quality nutrient intake of undernourished children, improve parents’ understanding and ability to address family nutrition needs, and expand local employment opportunities. 2016 funding partners: Misioneros de Caridad, Plenty donors.

Through the Essential Seeds and Trees Program (ESTP) in Chimaltenango, Plenty works with the Mayan women of Tecnologia Para Salud (Technology for Health) and agricultural technician Amado Del Valle Montufar to help 80 farming families grow and use trees and bushes with erosion control and insecticidal properties, and increase production of essential native beans, corn and non-gmo soybeans. 2013 funding partners: Atkinson Foundation, Plenty donors.

The ESTP also works with professors and students of the agriculture school Escuela Formacion Agricola (EFA) in Solola to grow and distribute three varieties of non-gmo soybeans.

essential seeds and trees seedlings
Amado del Valle (rt), Plenty technician Chuck Haren, and a member of Tecnologia Para Salud check tree seedlings at the project nursery.

Amado with TPS reps.
Amado del Valle with members of Tecnologia Para Salud in Chimaltenango, Guatemala.

 

Plenty also offers technical and material inputs to help Mayan community organizations ADIBE and FEDEPMA in Solola, and the women’s associations Grupo de Soya Santa Maria (GSSM) and Unidas Para Vivir Mejor (UPAVIM) in Guatemala City, to improve their processing and sales of fresh soy products and other high nutrient, low cost foods in their communities. Funding partners: Plenty donors.

ADIBE Soyaria crew
ADIBE soyfoods production staff in their “Fabrica de Soya,” which was originally established with Plenty’s assistance in 1980.

new GSSM milk making
A member of GSSM makes soymilk for the KSNP food supplementation project, which serves undernourished children of dumpsite workers in Guatemala City.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

El Salvador Programs and Partners

Plenty began working with the non-profit organization El Cuenco, the Programa de Soya San Ramon (PSSR), and the University of El Salvador (UES) Schools of Medicine and Agronomy in May 2011, in response to requests for assistance to establish non-gmo soybean production.

With the UES School of Medicine and El Cuenco, Plenty helps families living in severe poverty (an income level of $50-$100/month for a family of 5-6 people) to address undernourishment and employment needs by establishing production and use of foods rich in vitamin A, beta carotene, iron and folic acid, such as moringa, chaya, chipilin and papaya, and the growing, processing and sales of red beans and protein rich non-gmo soybeans. Funding partners: Plenty donors, Trull Foundation, El Cuenco, UES.

saves 2 days planting 1:4 a
A farmer in San Ramon tries out a new wheel seeder provided by Plenty. The seeder can cut his planting time in half.

non-gmo soy between plantain
Non-gmo soybeans planted in January 2013 between rows of new plantain in the Bajo Lempa region of southern El Salvador..

 

 

Plenty and El Cuenco purchased filtering tools and provided training on their use to help 65 families eliminate bacteria, coliform, and reduce lead in their water. Professors and students from the UES School of Medicine conduct primary health care, nutrition, and related environmental education activities twice a month to help adults and children understand and address undernourishment and water contamination problems. Funding partners: UES, Plenty donors, El Cuenco, Trull Foundation.

Plenty assists the women of Programa de Soya San Ramon (PSSR) and the Comite de Mujeres San Carlos (San Carlos Women’s Committee) with technical and material support to improve the processing and distribution of fresh soy milk and fortified bakery and corn-based foods within their communities. Funding partners: Plenty donors, El Cuenco, Trull Foundation. 

Chuck does wokshop
Workshop in soy foods preparation with the Program de Soya San Ramon and  University of El Salvador nutrition students.

women make milk
Marta and family prepare a lunch of soymilk, omelets of egg, okara (pulp left over from milk production), and chaya/green leafy vegetables at Rancho Grande, El Salvador.

Plenty partners with UES professors and students to help families living in severe poverty  improve their health, food security, and employment opportunities. With UES School of Agronomy, non-gmo soybean variety trials are taking place to make seeds available to farming families.

El Salvador

Plenty works with the University of El Salvador (UES) Schools of Medicine and Agriculture, the non-
profit El Cuenco and Programa de Soya San Ramon (PSSR) to help rural communities with high incidences of under undernourishment expand production and processing of foods rich in protein, vitamins and
minerals.

In June of this year Plenty representatives conducted a soy foods processing workshop with the women of
PSSR and UES professors and students from the School of Medicine and Nutrition. Participants learned methods of preparing soy cheese/tofu and tempeh (a cultured soy food), and how to include these low cost, nutrient rich products within traditional foods and meals.

With the help of a grant from The Trull Foundation, delivery of agriculture materials, equipment and
technical support is helpingover 50 economically marginalized farming families living in the villages San Carlos, Taura and Rancho Grande, El Salvador to increase production of essential foods. Representatives from UES School of Agriculture and small farmers in Rancho Grande and Nueva Esperanza, were encouraged by yields from initial plantings of non-GMO soybeans, (above photo) harvested in late April and late July.

Combined Federal Campaign

Plenty is happy to participate in the 2014 Combined Federal Campaign workplace giving program for federal employees.  Financial contributions federal employees designate to approved nonprofit organizations are matched by the U.S. government.  Contributions that Plenty receives through the CFC are earmarked for its food and agricultural programs in Central America. If you or a family member is a federal employee, please choose Plenty as your beneficiary, using CFC # 11625

Plenty’s Food and Nutrition Projects

In Guatemala City, 300 undernourished children on Wednesdays and 490 on Saturdays have been receiving nutritious soy foods produced by two local women’s organizations. Four hundred adults living near the country’s largest waste dumpsite attended food preparation and nutrition workshops carried out by Grupo de Soya Santa Maria. The International and Trull Foundations and Jewish Helping Hands have contributed funds for these efforts. We have also been helping Amado Del Valle, the Agriculture School in Solola and local subsistence farmers begin to propagate non-gmo soybeans.

In El Salvador, 31 farming families in Rancho Grande received tools, seeds and technical support to help re-establish foods rich in vitamin A/beta carotene, and initiate plantings of non-gmo soybeans. Water filters were provided for 61 families living in Lower Rio Lempa to eliminate coliform, bacteria, and reduce lead in their drinking water. Plenty provided technical support and equipment to help the women at Programa de Soya San Ramon improve processing and distribution of fresh soy foods among economically disenfranchised families living in San Salvador. The Trull Foundation and El Cuenco provided financial support, and these efforts are being carried out in cooperation with the University of El Salvador School of Medicine, Department of Nutrition.

Soy Projects Update

In May and November of 2011 Plenty representatives met with professors and department heads at the University of El Salvador (UES) School of Agriculture. With encouragement from the UES School of Medicine, in August representatives from the School made their first planting of non-gmo soybeans at an agriculture station near San Salvador.

This past December they harvested the first variety trials from three seed lines we brought to them from Guatemala, and they will be replanting in 2012.

They would like Plenty to conduct workshops for students about the processing of soybeans for small business development.  Plenty will continue working with the UES to multiply and distribute non-gmo soybeans and conduct soy food processing education activities in El Salvador.

Karen’s Soy Nutrition Project

Plenty continues to support the efforts of Grupo de Soya Santa Maria (GSSM) as they provide bakery foods fortified with toasted soy flour and soymilk to more than 300 undernourished children, as well as a few disabled and elderly adults, two days a week. GSSM has not missed a week of distributing foods to the children since starting in early October of 2010. In addition to the nutrition supplementation activity, printed information is given to parents to help them understand the nutritional needs of their families, and how those can be addressed with local food sources. And, in November this year GSSM started to conduct monthly food processing demonstrations for families, attended mostly by mothers and daughters, about how soyfoods can be made at home, and included in traditional foods and meals.

Plenty is now also working with GSSM to set up a location where they can sell soy and other low cost, high nutrient foods to the public. Part of the sales income is intended to sustain the food distribution services for undernourished children and provide employment opportunities for women who live at the dumpsite. GSSM representatives are improving their management and processing skills. They met with lawyers and government agencies in the last quarter of 2011 to begin the process of legalizing their organization and obtaining the permit needed to sell bakery foods.

Plenty was awarded funding from The Trull and International Foundations and Jewish Helping Hands that will be used in the first half of 2012 to help GSSM meet the costs of equipment, materials, rent and product registration, as they work to initiate their income generating activities. We estimate that $20,000 will be needed to sustain the GSSM nutrition supplementation and education activities during 2012 until the retail outlet begins to show a profit.

El Salvador

In May and November of 2011 Plenty representatives met with professors and department heads at the University of El Salvador (UES) School of Agriculture. With encouragement from the UES School of Medicine, in August representatives from the School made their first planting of non-gmo soybeans at an agriculture station near San Salvador. This past December they harvested the first variety trials from three seed lines we brought to them from Guatemala, and they will be replanting in 2012. They would like Plenty to conduct workshops for students about the processing of soybeans for small business development. In 2012 (funding permitting) Plenty will continue working with the UES to multiply and distribute non-gmo soybeans and conduct soy food processing education activities in El Salvador