Nyandarua County Horticulture Farmers Cooperate!

08-10-2019    20:42   |    Business Daily Africa

Small-scale horticultural farmers in Nyandarua have found a home in co-operative societies, which have opened a door to improved returns from crops they only previously cultivated for lack of better alternatives.

The newly formed societies operated for decades as self-help and merry-go-round groups of between 10 and 15 members.

Even then, the majority of them confess they had a hard time raising the weekly and monthly contributions, but now have no problem and can afford making contributions, mainly through deductions.

Despite a long list of the challenges farmers expect county and national governments to address, some of the cooperative societies are on the journey to becoming horticultural produce exporters.

They have successfully used the movement to secure guaranteed markets through contract farming with minimum price per commodity. The contracted farmers have specialized in snow peas, sugar snaps, garden peas and Irish potato varieties guided by the buyers.

“Co-operative movements have made it easier for the growers to access funding from financial institutions that find it easier to deal with co-operators than individual small-scale farmers,” said Nyandarua County Government Trade and Co-operative executive member Ms Muthoni Wamuiya.

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