Mercado Global is a social enterprise with an innovative approach to fighting poverty and empowering women in rural Guatemala. By providing business development support and connecting artisan cooperatives to sales opportunities in the U.S. on an unprecedented scale, Mercado Global partner artisans are a source of change in global sourcing practices.  

Each Mercado Global collection starts with a journey to the highlands of Guatemala where Mercado Global designers partner with indigenous women artisans to develop unique pieces that combine Mayan craftsmanship with modern design. From one of the most marginalized populations in the world, Mercado Global’s partner artisans are rising to become leaders in their communities and are sending their children to school, often for the first time.

Our Accomplishments
Mercado Global has made great strides in developing this innovative, market-based model for fighting poverty in rural Latin America. Some of our recent accomplishments include:
- Decreased Local Poverty: Our sales, on average, triple the daily income of our partner artisans. Mercado Global sales provide fair-wage income to over 360 artisans in 31 cooperatives and 2,100 dependents.
- Increased School Enrollment: All elementary school-aged children of Mercado Global’s original partner artisans are enrolled in school. This is exceptional in a country where indigenous children receive on average just 1.8 years of education over the course of their lifetime.
- Improved Health & Well-Being: Mercado Global partner artisans and their children are experiencing unprecedented food security and nutritional rates. Our partner artisans have also reported a 25% increase in access to potable water and a 34% increase in electricity in their homes since partnering with Mercado Global.
-Mercado Global has been recognized as an innovative model for empowering and enhancing the well-being of indigenous women. Newsweek magazine has featured the co-founders of Mercado Global on its cover. The organization was also the recipient of the Innovation in Social Enterprise Award from the Social Enterprise Alliance.

In 2004, two college students founded Mercado Global to address the debilitating poverty they witnessed on a trip to rural Latin America. Today, Mercado Global consists of 400 artisans in 30 communities across Guatemala, creating products that appear in retail stores throughout North America. Its mission remains the same: to link rural indigenous artisans to international markets and break the cycle of poverty.  The journey from a Yale dorm room to the cover of Newsweek and a rising standard of living in rural communities would not be possible without the hard work, support and creativity of our supporters.