Pacific Organic & Ethical Trade Community


Posted On: March 6, 2021

We at the Land Resources Division (LRD) of the Pacific Community acknowledge that Pacific women and men come with individual roles and perspectives that make different but equally valuable contributions to agriculture and our food system.

However, we also recognise that pre-existing and persistent gender specific barriers such as unequal access to financing, markets, agricultural training and education, fair working conditions and treatment, put women farmers and entrepreneurs within the agricultural sector at a significant disadvantage. We actively #choosetochallenge this by integrating a gender inclusive people-centred approach throughout our areas of work. We are championing this through the Pacific Organic and Ethical Trade Community (POETCom) which is housed in our organisation. The organic sector provides a unique space for building best practices in terms of gender mainstreaming in the agricultural sector.

The POETCom 2021-2025 Strategic Plan places emphasis on Gender and Social Inclusion, implying a ground-breaking approach in agricultural strategy. The plan marks a new important milestone in terms of gender mainstreaming into the organic agriculture sector in the Pacific and includes specific recommended actions to guide POETCom, its partners and Pacific governments for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of Pacific women and girls.

These best practices are generating discussion and inspiring actions in terms of gender mainstreaming across LRD programmes and the Pacific agricultural sector in general.

It’s also worth mentioning our efforts and achievements in fostering women’s participation in leadership and decision-making roles in the agriculture sector. I’m proud that 50% of the LRD’s senior management team and 70% of the POETCom team are women

As the Vice President of the IFOAM- Organics International World Board, I am also proud to add that the all Executive Board members are women!

We have come a long way in the gender journey and we have still a way to go before we can confidently proclaim a gender balanced agriculture sector – or world.

Together with all our stakeholders across the Pacific and the globe, we will continue to promote and build on the spirit of balance from all genders; as we firmly believe that an equal world can help us find sustainable solutions that address social inequalities, food insecurity and critical environmental challenges in the Pacific region.

Stronger together.


Karen Mapusua

Director, Land Resources Division, SPC

Vice President, IFOAM Organics International World Board

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