Zoyla Salazar Bermudez

Zoyla Salazar Bermudez

Zoyla is an economist specializing in finance, with over 20 years of experience. For the past 6 years, Zoyla has worked from the private rice-production sector in the Colombian  south west to help develop projects and proposals that promote opportunities for entrepreneurship, education, wealth production, and environmental protection. She has also focused on establishing a better way of life for the vulnerable populations of the Choco, NariƱo, Cauca & Valle del Cauca Departments (divisions of territory similar to US states).

How does your work relate to economic democracy?:

Arrozera La Esmeralda, where I work, has as a general policy to support all of the farmers that provide us with our raw materials, regardless of their economic capacity, under a principle of equality. Those farmers who do not have economic means are given special support. We begin with technical training, transferring of technology, financing seeds and agricultural materials, community lowans without interest, for the purchase of machines. These farmers are also provided with free technical assistance. We created a fund for the development of organic production, we offer a higher purchasing price to the farmer for their products, quality to the consumer, clean agriculture, environmental programs, and irrigation systems. Currently we are offering innovative practices like the use of biomass, a by-product as a result of rice processing, for the fertilization of soil. We also offer housing projects, and sport programs for the communities.