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dc.contributor.advisor Mtapuri, O. Gala, Xoliswa Masingita Hlubelihle 2013-12-02T13:16:23Z 2013-12-02T13:16:23Z 2013
dc.description Thesis (M.Dev.) --University of Limpopo, 2013 en_US
dc.description.abstract Agricultural cooperatives have been widely promoted as a vehicle for smallholder agricultural development in South Africa. As a result, agricultural co-operative registrations in South Africa are increasing. However, research suggests that South African co-operatives have generally not been effective, successful and functional. This study has investigated the challenges facing agricultural cooperatives in the Greater Tzaneen Municipality. It is expected that identification of these elements may enable institutions that offer support to cooperatives make better decisions to improve primary agricultural cooperatives support. Understanding of these elements could inform the efforts for members of cooperatives to achieve their set objectives and thus improve agriculture cooperative, employability, functionality and profitability. A case study of the Nkomamonta Agricultural Primary Cooperative in the Greater Tzaneen Municipalities is used. It is composed of fifteen agricultural cooperative which were purposively selected for the study because they were nearby, they are a pilot agricultural cooperative in the municipality and which are also not functioning as expected. The sample also included the purposively selected members, customers of these agricultural cooperative, workers, Greater Tzaneen Municipality, Local SEDA and LIBSA to explore the differences and provide insight to the knowledge, opinions and challenges that are facing agricultural cooperatives. One-on-one interviews were carried out with co-operative members as well as focus group discussions with customers, members of the cooperatives, workers, the Municipal officials, SEDA and LIBSA. A framework for analysing the challenges agricultural cooperatives with reference to the Nkomamonta cooperative case study was developed using literature of objectives of agricultural cooperatives, challenges which were identified by other researchers and success factors of smallholder agriculture. According to this study, farmers’ activities are hampered by a number of constraints. Production capability of the fifteen primary cooperatives is hampered by resource constraints such as lack of access to land (in one cooperative), machinery and equipment, finances and information relevant to production. Marketing, transportation, poor infrastructure and the elderly age of some cooperative members and issues related to free-rider syndrome were part of the problems that were identified. Low capability of some of the fifteen cooperatives to mobilise resources, use the limited resources available and low capability to manage institutional arrangements rendered the cooperatives ineffective in achieving their set objectives. The study recommends strategies for ensuring that the challenges facing agricultural cooperatives are minimised to better their services in the community. These include strategies for addressing internal and external issues affecting the cooperatives. Direct intervention from government is recommended to improve production through revising land allocation systems which made Kulani Agricultural Cooperative not to have land for growing crops. Jerry Jeff and Nwa Rex went out of action for eight months due to renovation of neighbourhood inorganic farms by the Department of Agriculture. Another strategy would entail improving extension services and follow up and strict monitoring of effective use of government resources provided to farmers. Responding and action taking when disaster has struck the agricultural cooperative by Government is also a plausible strategy. Access and training to relevant technologies to improve the processing and packaging capabilities of cooperatives should improve. Marketing and management activities should be supported through provision of improved infrastructure and relevant training. Farmers themselves should consider assisting one another especially regarding land issues as it was discovered that 67 hectares lay unutilised while the farmer next door needed land. Farmers should also engage in value added activities, and improve marketing programs and cost-effective distribution mechanisms. en_US
dc.format.extent 72 leaves en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher University of Limpopo (Turfloop Campus) en_US
dc.relation.requires PDF en_US
dc.subject Agricultural cooperatives en_US
dc.subject Agricultural development en_US
dc.subject.ddc 334.68368257 en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Agriculture, Cooperative en_US
dc.title Challenges facing LED Agricultural cooperative in the Greater Tzaneen Municipality : a case study of Nkomamonta Primary Agricultural Cooperative in Limpopo en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US

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