A success story: Processing groundnut oil brings income and satisfaction to co-op farmers in Malawi

| December 19, 2022

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Farmers often complain of not making enough money when they sell their produce. Among other reasons, this happens due to lack of skills, lack of capacity to add value to their produce, and unavailability of reliable markets.

In some parts of Malawi, co-operatives are helping farmers solve these challenges. For example, Nthiransembe Co-operative in Mchinji District in Malawi’s Central Region has a factory that processes oil from groundnuts. The factory not only provides the member farmers with a ready market, but helps them raise income through the shareholder dividends they receive annually.

This script explains how these farmers use the co-operative to engage in a viable business. It is based on interviews with co-op members.

You could use this script as inspiration to research and write a script on groundnut processing and marketing and how farmers can raise capital for farming businesses. Or you might choose to produce this script on your station, using voice actors to represent the speakers. If so, please make sure to tell your audience at the beginning of the program that the voices are those of actors, not the original people involved in the interviews.

If you choose to use this script as background material or as inspiration for creating your own program, you might consider the following questions:

  • Which groundnut processing options do farmers in your area have? How can farmers find funding to process groundnuts?
  • What role does the government play in your country in assisting farmers to establish farming businesses?
  • Are resources available to help farmers keep records and conduct their business more effectively?
  • Does joining a co-operative help farmers get easier access to markets?
  • What challenges do local groundnut growers face in adding value to their produce?
  • Do both women and men farmers work in co-operatives? If so, are there differences in their approach to groundnut processing and marketing? Are there differences in the groundnut varieties they prefer for processing and consumption? If so, what criteria do each (men and women) use to choose the varieties they grow?

Apart from speaking directly to farmers and other key players in the local agriculture sector, you could also use these questions as the basis of a phone-in or text-in.