The development of farmer organizations in Cameroon is significantly less advanced than in Ivory Coast or Nigeria. ECOM’s work has to-date strengthened one existing farmer cooperative by focusing initially on up-country fermentation, drying and bagging. By implementing a dryer and bagging station at the cooperative’s up-country collection station, the cooperative will create and retain local value for its members and create a viable platform for training farmers in better agricultural practices.
Moreover, an Internal Control System will be introduced to facilitate traceability and provide better data management and the program will be expanded to introduce farmer training on good agricultural practices.
The SOCAMAK (Société Coopérative des Agriculteurs de la Méfou et Akono) is located in the center region of Cameroon, in Ngoumou close to Yaounde, the capital. The cooperative was founded in May 2006.
Today, the Cooperative has 202 official members and 258 partial members who are producing just under 300mt per year. The yield is very low (less than 200kg per hectare) and the farms are very small. ECOM wants to help farmers increase their yield and their income by joining its training program.
Fakoco, together with partners, has financed a drying and bagging station, ready to be installed in Ngoumou. The ECOM project coordinator is already working on farmer awareness on the project in sub-sections of the cooperative and is currently preparing an assessment of the agricultural practices and the management system used by the cooperative.