Dowa Farmers Urged to Join Cooperatives to Fight Poverty

Members of a farmers’ cooperative in Dowa attest to the importance of belonging to the group saying their lives have changed for the better.

Chairperson of Matamangwe Cooperative Society,  Ines  Nkhoma, told Zodiak Online that through the cooperative, members have purchased two maize mills,  established an oil factory and have over nine million Kwacha in profit.

"We are making strides in uplifting our lives here,” she said.

Executive Director of Rhema Institute for Development, Innocent Semu, observed that smallholder agricultural cooperatives were critical to poverty reduction since members get used to talking business as a block.

Semu is optimistic that through the cooperatives, the farmers would now meet their economic and social needs as they lobby for better prices of their commodities.

This came out in Dowa Monday during a learning visit to Matamangwe Cooperative Society in T/A Msakambewa by Lead farmers from Lumbadzi in Lilongwe.

“We want to see farmers empowered economically in a drive to reduce poverty in the country through smallholder agricultural cooperatives,” Semu said.

Apart from poverty reduction, cooperative societies also entrench democratic principles and self-reliance in developing countries such as Malawi.

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