Development of Women Market

MATI Women Cooperative Market Concept

The Problems:

1. Year after year the farmers in general and the women farmers, in particular, have been facing difficulties in selling their products with profit because of the existing faulty market system controlled by the middlemen syndicate. A huge gap exists between the prices at farm-gate and the prices in the urban market. Even the government seems to be helpless or indifferent in solving the problem.

2. There is no existing supply chain for organic products where the targeted farmers can sell their products. Therefore, they are losing interest in growing organic crops especially in the field lands where organic production is very much difficult and labor-intensive.

3. The farmers living in the remote Charland’s (river bank) area, the working area of MATI, face more difficulties in marketing their products due to lack of marketing facilities and remoteness. The women farmers face more difficulties because of the socio-cultural & religious barriers for them to sell their products to the existing market. This problem has become much more visible and problematic during the lockdown of COVID-19 while the farmers had to sell their produces at very low prices despite much higher prices in the urban market.


Possible Solution:

As the problem is too much structural, therefore, the solution should be something innovative and massive, in order to get sustainable & effective changes. Therefore, analyzing the existing problems and situation we have determined that if a new supply chain could be established under the control of the farmer cooperative, the problems could be solved in a sustainable manner.

Expected Results:

This will bring lots of benefits for both rural and urban communities as follows-

1. The farmers especially the women farmers will get easy market access of their surplus products at their doorstep to get maximum profit resulting in their increased income, improved livelihood, and economic empowerment.

2. The cooperative will also make the production inputs, technologies, external food items, and other external goods available for the members that will also help to reduce their family expenditure resulting in creating opportunities to spend more in education, healthcare, water & sanitation, etc. leading to their sustainable development.

3. Lots of employment opportunities will be created for the women and youth (especially girls) of the community.

4. The farmers will be more encouraged in organic products that will increase the availability of organic food for the people contributing to food security, human health and the environment.

5. The community shop will create opportunities for both rural & urban poor to make the basic food items available at lower cost contributing to their food sovereignty rather than security. Moreover, it will reduce the carbon footprint by reducing the transportation distance of food.

6. The urban people will have easy access to safe & nutritious food contributing to their food security.

7. A welfare fund will also be created out of the profit generated from the market system to support the extreme poor peoples’ need i.e emergency support, disaster response, crop insurance, student scholarship, health insurance, etc.


The strategies:

1. Conceptual development and participatory planning & implementation in ‘learning by doing’ and ‘step by step’ approach by increasing the capacity of MATI and the Cooperative.

2. Develop a small model first and then go for expansion step by step.

3. Develop an enterprise under the cooperative to run with profit on a strong organizational base while the cooperative and MATI will only provide necessary supports (investment, capacity building, etc.) by fundraising from the donors.

4. Develop demand-based production plan to produce by the individual farmers while preservation, processing, packaging, etc. done by the cooperative enterprise.

5. Procure necessary services from competent service agencies.

6. Develop a professional team for managing the whole supply chain in a corporate mode.

7. Proper branding of the products by ensuring quality control (establishing testing lab facilities if possible).

8. Direct marketing by the cooperative by establishing community shop (both at rural & urban level), online marketing, home delivery, agent marketing; develop market linkage with likeminded enterprises/companies, etc.