How Sol Simple builds trust with small growers

What's authenticity in sourcing? For Will Burke and his company, it's knowing the first name of your farmer.

Will Burke Interview from Penton on Vimeo.

Sol Simple certainly deserved its 2016 New Hope NEXTY Award win for "Best Transparently Sourced Product." Not only does the dried fruit and cashew nut company source its products from Nicaragua, one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere, but cofounder Will Burke is also based there, heading up operations to connect small farmers with U.S. markets. In addition to providing a steady income, Sol Simple is bettering marginalized communities by employing single mothers, prioritizing renewable energy (the "sol" part of the company derives from large solar driers that dehydrate fruit for shipment) and improving access to education.

Here, Burke explains how he maintains authenticity as his company grows and how he earns farmer trust for sustainable partnerships with growers.

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