National Forum on Agri-Cooperatives

National Forum on Agri-Cooperatives

November 27, 2015

In recognition of its members’ and networks’ perspectives in building a national federation of agri-cooperatives, PAKISAMA organized a “National Forum on Agri-Cooperatives” with the theme “Agri-Coops to Fight Poverty, Powerlessness, Climate Change” on November 27, 2015 at Ateneo de Manila, Quezon City.

The forum was attended by about 100 participants from PAKISAMA’s member agri-coops and partner-farmer organizations (FOs) attended the forum, 40% of whom were women.  The FOs that attended the forum are partners of Agri-Cord Philippine Synergy, Philippine Partnership for the Development of Human Resources in Rural Areas (PhilDHRRA), Coop-NATCCO, Foundation for a Sustainable Society, Inc. (FSSI), Peace and Equity Foundation (PEF), Task Force Mapalad (TFM) and Kilus Magniniyog.

During his keynote address, Mr. Orlan Ravanera, Chairperson of the Cooperative Development Authority (CDA), encouraged the participants to submit a roadmap towards the establishment of a national federation of agri-coops so they can identify their points of support accordingly.  Ms. Vicky Serrato of Asian Farmers’ Association for Sustainable Rural Development (AFA) shared the lessons learned from the experience of its 17 national FO-members in 13 countries in Asia which include 2 agri-coops. Mr Jose Ebron of Coop NATCCO also discussed good practices in empowering men and women family farmers through agri-cooperatives.

From an international perspective, Mr Marek Poznanski of Brussels-based Collectif Stratégies Alimentaires (CSA) presented the key findings of a European Union (EU) research on “Support for Farmers’ Cooperatives.” He presented how EU agri-coops add value to the market, the power of EU agri-coops in the food chain, internal governance of EU agri-coops, and support measures given to EU agri-coops.

During the forum, participants were able to come up with an initial mapping of the agri-coops present at the forum – identifying their structures, initiatives, challenges and opportunities.  They also agreed on several action points such as:  a) forming a Technical Working Group (TWG) towards the building of a national federation of agri-coops; b) Including PAKISAMA and partner institutions, representatives from agri-coops/FOs in TWG c) assigning the TWG to work towards the Founding Congress of the national federation; and d) suggesting that CDA become the group’s technical advisor.

Read full report here.

Photos available here.


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