Case of Strengthening Vegetable Supply Chain of Cooperatives in Nepal
(October, 2021) Vegetable farming is one of the major agricultural activities among farmers in Nepal. Climate of Valley area, near Nepali capital Kathmandu is very favorable for year-round the vegetable production and creates a comparative advantage over other agricultural activities. The production of vegetables, utilizing these ecological niches, could be extremely beneficial in the context of employment and income generation.
Good Neighbors Global Impact Foundation(GNGIF) has been supporting vegetable production and promotion with Good Neighbors(GN) Nepal by clustering cooperative members of Shree Sarshwotikunda Agriculture Cooperative Ltd and Shree Sarangidanda Women Agriculture Cooperative Ltd since 2020. Also noteworthy, a cooperative outlet selling vegetable from the cooperatives was established on July 2021 in cooperation with each other. Let’s learn about how the cooperatives cooperate to strengthen the vegetable value chain.
Valley CDP is only 15km far from the city center having high demand and large consumption of vegetables. Considering this, the production and marketing of fresh vegetables can be a good resource for income generation of farmers. In Valley CDP, 2 cooperatives have been actively engaging in the commercial as well as subsistence vegetable farming system.
The process of vegetable farming and selling is comprised of 5 steps. Before farming, all farmers should participate in onsite coaching and group-based learning process to strengthen their capacity. All harvested vegetables from 2 cooperatives are collected by Sarangedanda Cooperative. Collected vegetables are transported to the outlet, and displayed and sold by Sarshwotikunda Cooperative. This process reduced the long chain of marketing in the vegetable industry.
‘Cooperative Business Outlet’ has been operating, with support from GN Nepal, since July 2021 in Kathmandu city. This outlet collects the vegetables from the cooperative working area and sells them in the capital city. Before establishing the outlet, farmers should sell their vegetables to private middlemen who visit cooperatives irregularly. This is the main reason of the long supply chain and low farm gate prices. To resolve the problem, cooperative members decided to invest GN’s Revolving Fund and Community Fund to establish their outlet. 2 cooperatives set their role for more efficient operation of the outlet. This is why collecting vegetables and managing the outlet are operated by each different cooperative.
Cooperatives have been successful in supporting their members to earn a decent livelihood through vegetable farming & selling and helping new members who want to join in and benefit from its activities. Technical support from the Income Generation Department (IG) staff of GN Nepal and financial support for the sustainable scale-up of its business from GIF are also important elements of success.
More than anything, members’ active engagement is the most important factor to make a success. Good Neighbors Global Impact Foundation(GNGIF) is ever ready to support cooperatives having a resolution will to solve faced problems!