Major Investments to improve marketing efforts by cooperatives in Mali
The Ségou, Mopti, Sikasso and Koulikoro agricultural cooperatives receiving assistance under the Feere Diyara project are now equipped with new warehouse and storage facilities and machinery for conditioning and processing crops. This investment of more than CAN $3.2 million was aimed primarily at providing member families of the cooperatives with stronger services for obtaining inputs and for marketing.
The new infrastructure and machinery were turned over to the cooperatives at an event organized in March in Mali. Attending the ceremony were several hundred women and men representing the partner cooperatives, as well as the Government of Mali and the Government of Canada, represented by the Malian Minister of Agriculture, Kassoum Denon, and the Assistant Director for Development Cooperation at the Embassy of Canada, Christian Alix. “The training delivered to women and men farmers dealing with production and economic services such as input supply and marketing must also be accompanied by the installation of infrastructure and machinery. Post-harvest investment is essential for improving the quality of agricultural products along with the incomes of women and men farmers,” stated Normand Jacob, Feere Diyara Project Director, at the event.
Also attending was Richard Lacasse, SOCODEVI Executive Director and the Alliance agricole internationale representative at the event who emphasized the importance of professionalizing cooperative activities. “By supporting stronger organization of agricultural cooperative economic activities, we are making tangible improvements to food security among the population and a significant reduction in the poverty rate of families, which is our ultimate goal,” stated Mr. Lacasse in his address.
With financial support from the Government of Canada and the Government of Mali, the Feere Diyara Project has the goal of reducing the poverty rate among grain farmers in Mali. Implemented by the Alliance agricole internationale (CECI – SOCODEVI – UPA DI), this project is a long-term initiative that will contribute to improving the economic conditions of families and decreasing household food insecurity while improving access to quality grain and vegetable products.