Cooperatives and Development: How Dutch cooperatives develop agricultural markets in Africa
Tuesday April 24 th, FoodFirst and Agri-ProFocus, in cooperation with Rabobank, organize a conference on the role of cooperatives in the support of agricultural development and access to finance and markets for farmers in developing countries.
Date: Tuesday April 24th 2012
Time: 13:30 – 16:00, drinks afterwards
Location: Innovatoren Floriade Venlo
Target Audience: Dutch and international companies and (farmers) cooperatives, practitioners and policy makers working with farmers cooperatives.
2012 is declared as International Year of Cooperatives by the UN. Worldwide, activities are organized to create public awareness on the important role of cooperatives, for example in reduction of poverty, creation of jobs and social integration.
In the conference on April 24 th, FoodFirst and Agri-ProFocus strive to share with you the strengths and challenges of cooperative business models. Cooperative advocates see these models of collaboration and entrepreneurship as vehicles that may help farmers to get access to finance and access to markets. At the same time historical experiences and current local interventions show that introducing and supporting cooperatives in for example Africa is not a simple recipe for success. How can cooperatives contribute to increased access to finance and markets of smallholder producers in developing countries? Why are cooperative models, based on trust between economic players, successful in certain countries and contexts and less successful in others? What are recent experiences and realistic perspectives on supporting these models?
We will look at important lessons learned in the years of experience in the financial cooperative sector, the Dutch dairy sector, as well as lessons learned in the formation of local cooperatives in developing countries.