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Increased production and income through cooperatives

The Royal Norwegian Society for Development and the Norwegian agricultural cooperative Felleskjøpet have since 2003 collaborated on building up the seed and commodity company IKURU, which is part-owned by farmers in the Nampula region of Mozambique. The goal has been to build up a business owned by local agricultural partners in order to strengthen farmers’ incomes through increased production of food, nuts and seeds.

Project background

Around 80% of the population of Mozambique are active in agriculture, and the country has a great potential for agriculture-based commercial development. The Nampula region is the most important agricultural area in Mozambique and has its own export harbour. Inputs such as seeds of high quality, fertilisers, tools at reasonable prices are a prerequisite for developing the sector.  In addition, it is important to ensure that the farmers have access to stable markets and to secure a better price for their products in regional or international markets.

About the project

IKURU currently organises the production and sale of seeds and other inputs. In addition they sell volumes of both ecological and conventionally-produced goods such as sesame, cashew, peanuts, soya and several types of beans.

During the period 2012-2013, Felleskjøpet in cooperation with the Royal Norwegian Society for Development set up a seed-cleaning line, enabling IKURU to increase their capacity to clean, bag and quality assure farmers’ production. Together with Felleskjøpet, the Royal Norwegian Society for Development has now provided IKURU with capacity and skills so that IKURU can deliver high quality seeds and commodities to the market value adding the production of farmers in Mozambique. The plant, which will be formally opened in January 2014, will provide quality assurance for the production of seeds and for commodities from the region’s producers. 

During the period 2013-2015, the Royal Norwegian Society for Development in collaboration with the Mozambique organisation AMPCM will start work on building up professional and productive cooperatives with a focus on IKURU’s geographical areas of activity and in the value chains where IKURU is active. An important strategic component and goal for the project is to contribute to equal opportunities for women and men in the cooperatives, as well as ensuring access to relevant services and products for female producers in relation to their needs and priorities. 

The intention is that the various regional cooperatives will eventually be coupled together at a national level to strengthen their capacity and wealth creation.

Our contribution and role

  • Project leadership A to Z
  • Ensuring quality and learning within IKURU and the farmer organisations
  • Contributing to strategically-correct positioning in relation to the authorities and the market
  • Contributing to building capacity for local collaborative partners
  • Ensuring long-term sustainability and growth
  • Creating trust and long-term perspectives that will attract new partnerships

Results

  • Increased seed/commodity cleaning capacity from 2-3 tonnes to 12-15 per day
  • Enhance quality through mechanical and more effective cleansing
  • Provide a basis for export and incomes for IKURU and their farmers
  • The strategic work has given IKURU a clearer business plan and revitalised farmers and other collaborating partners
  • Restructuring of IKURU debt to improve to positive balance sheet
  • Partnership support to increase access to finance and equity
     

Contact us

Karsten Gjefle, Senior advisor

Mobile: + 47 410 42 275
Email: karsten.gjefle@norgesvel.no

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Cooperative organisation in Mosambique