Date Posted: July 23rd, 2012
Like farmers’ co-operatives, farmers’ groups can benefit farmers in many ways. They can improve access to farming inputs and other resources, facilitate knowledge sharing, and boost income and social status. Like co-operatives, farmers’ groups often focus on the processing and marketing of an agricultural product. The following stories from past FRWs provide some examples:
Malawi: How making juice can save a forest (FRW #161, June 2011)
Tanzania: Farmer-led irrigation scheme brings bumper harvest (FRW 199, May 2012) http://weekly.farmradio.org/2012/05/07/tanzania-farmer-led-irrigation-scheme-brings-bumper-harvest-by-paddy-roberts-for-farm-radio-weekly-in-tanzania/
Zambia: Better incomes through sorghum (FRW #118, July 2010)
Burkina Faso: Women’s group finds new use for ‘green gold’ (FRW #100, February 2010)
Rwanda: Ban on plastic bags creates new market for banana bags (FRW #94, January 2010)
Swaziland: Women’s weaving co-operative gives ‘lift’ to communities (FRW #75, August 2009)
Our latest script package, package 94, contains eight scripts and an issue pack on co-operatives. The issue pack gives examples of co-operatives, background information on co-operatives, production ideas for programming on co-operatives, and further resources on co-operatives – organizations, audio files, print documents, and a video. You can find package 94 at http://www.farmradio.org/english/radio-scripts/
For earlier scripts on co-operatives, go to: http://farmradio.org/english/radio-scripts/cooperatives.asp
Do farmers in your area work together to obtain better market prices for their products, or purchase inputs as a co-operative? You may wish to find a farmers’ group and prepare a news story or arrange an on-air interview which profiles the group and their efforts:
-Who are the members of this group? Are they grouped by area, the type of crop they produce, etc.?
-When did they come together? What were individual farmers’ experiences with processing and selling their crop prior to forming the group?
-Ask the members to describe in detail the process they use to process their goods, identify markets for their crops, gather them together, and sell them. Did they try other methods before determining that one method worked best?
-How much extra income do farmers earn as a result of group marketing, group processing, or group purchase of inputs? What are the other benefits of working as a group (saving time, learning from each other, etc.)?