On Monday, 16 October 2017, VECO Indonesia has officially replaced its name to Rikolto which means ‘harvest’ in Esperanto language. The event took a place at The Residence of Belgian Ambassador to Indonesia, Mr. Patrick Herman in Jakarta. The shifting to a new name was symbolised with the signing of an Amendment of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) by Dr. Nelson Simanjuntak, Head of Cooperation Facilitation, Ministry of Home Affairs of the Republic of Indonesia and Mr. Dominique Vanderhaeghen as the Rikolto Indonesia Regional Director.
On his remarks, Mr. Herman emphasized the importance of bringing a brand new name to the organisation that aims to focus its work on local smallholding growers especially on four focused commodities such as cocoa, cinnamon, coffee and rice in Kerinci, Merangin, Tasikmalaya, Boyolali, Solo, Situbondo or Bondowoso, Flores, and some parts of Sulawesi.
Why a new brand name?
There are two main reasons for the name change. First of all, for a practical reason. In Belgium, the organisation is known as Vredeseilanden. Everywhere else, it is known as VECO. This double name often created confusions. Changing the name allows us to create a strong, recognisable, international brand for the entire organisation.
Secondly, the organisation has changed a lot. Since the foundation in the 1980s, the organisation has been deeply rooted in Belgium. Today, these roots cover 4 continents and 8 regions worldwide. As of the 1st of January 2017, there was a change on the organisation’s structure to become an international network organisation. Thus, it needs a brand name that suited this new phase of the organisation, and that matched its mission.
Mr. Vanderhaeghen, reaffirms that the new brand will not change the organisations mission in Indonesia, instead it will intensify its focus to strengthen the countries food system.
"Our name might change, but our values and mission to empower and enable smallholder farmers to contribute to poverty alleviation and sustainable agricultural practices will continue as we move forward to build bridges between different stakeholders in the food system in Indonesia”, said Mr. Vanderhaeghen.
In Indonesia, Rikolto's tagline is ‘Bagaimana Masa Depan Pangan Kita’. This tagline represents the issues of sustainability and inclusion in food systems championed by Rikolto.