Analysis of Constraints of Rural Beef Cattle Cooperative Farmers: A Case Study of Ga-kibi, Norma and Mogalakwena in Blouberg

  •  Isaac Agholor    


Agricultural co-operatives are tools used to accelerate the process of agricultural development. Co-operatives in South Africa are useful tools used to assuage poverty and improve the living standard of the rural household through pooling together the available resources. There is emerging evidence that beef cooperatives and their members can benefit from market oriented agriculture when smallholders farmers are integrated into the value chain management. Furthermore, institutional provisions along the value chain and policies seldom prioritize the needs of smallholder farmers and thus increased the barriers to production and market access. The purpose of this study is to evaluate production and marketing constraints as perceived by beef cattle cooperative farmers in Ga-kibi, Norma, and Mogalakwena. The specific objectives of the study were: (i) to assess production and marketing constraints of beef farmers’ cooperative; and (ii) to determine the role of speculators (traders) in marketing of beef cattle. The paper succinctly examines the tottering problems of speculators and concomitant contribution in the marketing of beef animals in the study areas. The study adduces some reasons for the poor performance of beef co-operatives in achieving their goal. These include amongst others: problem of pest and diseases, water stress, inadequate marketing infrastructures, insufficient market access, price fixing of culled stocks, labour and stock pilfering. Logistic regression was used to evaluate perception of constraints by beef cooperative farmers’. The response pattern revealed that the ability of farmers to perceive constraints increases with number of years of farming experience. The study concludes with proposals to improve the performance of agricultural co-operatives in the study areas.

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