Monrovia, (PMU-MoA) – October 29, 2019: The Buu-Yao Cocoa Farmers’ Cooperative Society located in Gbloulay, District number five (5) in Nimba County is expected to receive a grant in the tune of $24, 000 United States Dollars from the Ministry of Agriculture through the Tree Crops Extension Project (TCEP) over a three year period. Upon the completion of the Business Plan, the cooperative will receive an initial amount of $10,000 in year one and the remaining 14,000 will be disbursed through a digressive process of $8,000 and $6,000 respectively in year two and three.
In a Memorandum of Understanding signed over the week in Gbloulay between the Ministry of Agriculture represented by the Project Coordinator of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) Project Implementation Unit, Mr. Emmanuel G. Vah and the Buu-Yao Cocoa Farmer’s Cooperative Society represented by its Chairman Mr. A. Gonlay Gant, states that the grant allocation is results-based, noting that the Farmer’s Cooperative must meet the different targets set forth in the agreement to become eligible for further allocations.
Mr. Vah assured that the Cooperative Development Agency along with the Ministry of Agriculture will design the relevant training packages to build the capacity of the Buu-Yao Cocoa Farmers’ Cooperative Society to develop the institutional by-laws and constitution, the operational procedures, the business plan, a prudent financial management process and transparency indicators.
A donation containing two motorbikes and safety helmets, a moisture meter that will assist in determining high quality grade of cocoa, and three power saws to help farmers prune overgrown trees on existing cocoa farms was presented to the farmers.
The Chairman of the Buu-Yao Cocoa Farmer’s Cooperative Society, Mr. A. Gonlay Gant thanked IFAD through the Ministry of Agriculture for the generous donation to the Cooperative. “The grant will provide the enabling environment for the cooperative to purchase cocoa from farmers and revolve the proceeds into profitable ventures to increase the viability of the cooperative.
The project will provide support to 8,000 cocoa farmers in the eight districts in Nimba County. The 12 Young Professionals recruited by the project are working in the county to identify potential cocoa farmers operating a minimum of 1 hectare of cocoa farms. After the screening process, these farmers are linked to KUU Groups and farmers’ Cooperative to increase their visibility for potential project support.
Additional MOUs are expected to be signed with seven farmers’ cooperative societies over the next few weeks. Upon the signing of these MOUs, the cooperatives will become eligible for support and capacity building under the project.