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Project description - New Crops - Social entrepreneurship to create new opportunities for socially excluded in rural areas

New Crops - Social entrepreneurship to create  new opportunities for socially excluded in rural areas

The purpose orienting the project was to provide trainers, managers and managers to be of start-up groups of coops and social enterprises with the knowledge and skills necessary to establish and run successful organisations/social businesses that deliver economic and social results to their members and generate work opportunities in rural areas. For this reason the partnership designed and tested innovative methodologies of learning, in this working sector where traditional competences should be supplemented with a deep participatory approach, an ethical outlook and a keen innovation spirit.

Target Group: Members or future members of cooperatives or social enterprises from rural areas.  

Results and main activities:

  • Identify and promote 40 best practices from the 4 partner countries;
  • Documenting 16 successful business models as case studies, used in the creation of the training materials  
  • Developing new training materials - 2 start-up guides for farmers cooperatives and other rural social enterprises.
  • Developing an European Toolkit for Starting Up Cooperatives and Social Enterprises in Rural Areas, available at national and European level. 
  • The documentary and learning film "The Story of a New Crop"
All project results can be downloaded from the links below.


Beneficiary: Civil Society Development Foundation (Romania) 

Partners: Federazione Trentina Della Cooperazione (Italy), Universidad De Almeria (Spain), Asociacion De Organizaciones De Productores De Frutas Y Hortalizas Dealmeria – Coexphal (Spain) and Coompanion Kooperativ Utveckling Skaraborg (Sweden)

Funding: The project was funded through the Erasmus+ programme.

Duration: September 2014 - August 2017

Contact details:
Civil Society Development Foundation
Irina Sinziana Opincaru, researcher
Tel.: 021.310.01.81
Email: irina.opincaru@fdsc.ro 

Best practices from Italy. Spain, Sweden and Romania


Best practices Trento - ITALY

Best Practices Almeria - SPAIN

Best practices Skaraborg - SWEDEN

Best practices - ROMANIA 

Case studies from Italy, Spain, Sweden and Romania

Policy and regulation reports from Italy, Romania, Sweden and Spain

All documents are in English.

Guides for start-up and management of farmers coops and social enterprises


Understanding Agricultural Cooperatives. A Start Up Guide

English                 Romanian           Spanish

Understanding Social Enterprises. A Start Up Guide For Rural Social Enterprises

English                 Romanian            Italian                   Swedish

Documentary and Learning Film "The Story of a New Crop"


To view the episodes of the informational and learning movie "The Story of a New Crop", please click on the links below.

All episodes and their corespondent subtitles in English, Italian, Romanian, Swedish and Spanish are hosted on CSDF's Youtube page, in a special project playlist (New Crops), at this link.

European Toolkit for Starting Up Cooperatives and Social Enterprises in Rural Areas


The document is only available in English, at this link.


Policy recommendations


Farmers’ coops and social enterprises, key actors in combating rural poverty in EU - policy frameworks and capacity building needs

The document is only available in English, at this link.




The European Commission support for the production of this publication does not constitute an endorsement of the contents which reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsi­ble for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

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