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Director: Artyom Somov

Producer: Marianna Dravnel, Valeria Senina

Executive Producer: RTD

Writer: Artyom Somov

Genres: Documentary

Demographics: 15+

The Coca Trap

Ruptly - Documentary Collection

Growing coca leaf is the only way to put food on the table for many in rural Colombia. Coca, which is the base substance for making cocaine, is the only livelihood they can rely upon. Most of Colombia’s coca growers say they only do it because they have no alternative options and distance themselves from rapacious drug traffickers.

In 2016, the government signed a peace deal with the Colombian Revolutionary Armed Forces (FARC), putting a decades-long civil war to an end. The landmark agreement was also intended to give Colombia’s coca farmers living on rebel-held territories an opportunity to give up illegal cultivation by providing them with subsidy and technical aid. In exchange, farmers were to voluntarily destroy their coca plants and switch to legal ways of earning money.

Our documentary explores how the poor farmers have been unable to leave their past lives fully behind. Revealing that crop substitution payments are failing to reach those in needs, all the while witnessing the army forcefully uproot farmers coca plants and livelihoods.

With the government failing to put their words into action, we meet Colombia’s coca growers gathering to resist law enforcement and shine a light on authorities failing to fulfil their end of the bargain.

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