To ascertain the role of agricultural cooperatives to sustainable agricultural development and food security in the Gauteng Province of South Africa: the case of Metsweding Municipality
Mcata, Ncumisa Cordelia
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This study deals with analysis of the role of agricultural cooperatives to sustainable agricultural development and food security. A simple random sampling technique was used in the selection of agricultural cooperatives. A structured questionnaire was used to obtain information on the membership and activities of the agricultural cooperative. The study has revealed that there are 12 major agricultural cooperative enterprises in the area involved in the livestock, crop, storage and processing. The agricultural produce of the agricultural cooperatives include maize, vegetables, poultry, beef, piggery, sheep & goats and animal feed and farm inputs procured are fertilizers, seeds, agro chemicals and agricultural equipment. One of the major challenges of the agricultural cooperatives in Metsweding is that of developing appropriate institutions to mobilize the members of the rural sector into a greater productive. As such small holder farmers in rural areas characterised by low resource utilization, small farm holdings, scattered, farmlands, finds it difficult to pool their resources together in order to raise their farm income and substantially improve of their living conditions. In such situation cooperatives representatives represent a strong and viable economic alternative. Cooperatives organization offers the best machinery for reaching the masses of the small scale farmers.
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