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Farmer-Controlled Economic Initiatives

Agricultural cooperatives usually develop in rural economies during the transformation from self-sufficiency farming to full market production. At this stage farmers often start realising their weak individual economic position in the market. By joining forces and initiating economic cooperation, farmers can strengthen their position in the market so that they can jointly benefit.

This publication is intended to serve as a guide to support farmers’ groups through the difficult process of starting a cooperative business and to help them find their way and make their own choices in developing a successful enterprise. We realise that this publication is only a beginning and we would therefore appreciate receiving readers’ comments or descriptions of the experiences of farmers’ groups. In order to facilitate discussion we have included a number of statements in Appendix 2.

Version 2, 2006