Cooperatives are the future of the saffron value chain in Morocco | BTC - Belgian Development Agency

Working closely with cooperatives

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Fatima and her colleagues coach 27 cooperatives (including Khadija’s) and two unions of cooperatives. Overall, almost 1,400 saffron producers – men as well as women – are supported. Fatima helps them through coaching, training sessions or local back-up to get organised better, to be more professional and access new economic opportunities.

In 2016, she helped design plans to develop a vision of their future , to put in place administrative and financial tools and to obtain health certifications.

The involvement of women in the decision-making bodies is one of her main concerns. Still in 2016, five cooperatives elected women on their Board of Directors. A small victory. Step by step, things change. 


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Why to get organised in cooperatives?

Khadija and the other saffron producers practice family agriculture on small plots of land. By getting organised in cooperatives they can pool their resources, improve their production techniques and the quality of saffron, but they can also more easily commercialise their products and negotiate better prices.

The cooperative can also bypass the many intermediaries and directly target customers, professional buyers or a union of cooperatives (Economic Interest Group).  
By doing so, the cooperative can contribute to the social and economic development of its members. It is also a means to foster social inclusion and democratic participation. 


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group of cooperatives

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Bringing together producers in a cooperative is not always enough to efficiently pool the efforts and bear the costs needed to access the market economy.

Getting together in a group of cooperatives (EIG) makes it possible to become even more professional, to put in place a tracing system and to store saffron in optimal preservation conditions in accordance with standards.

This also helps to meet more significant demand for saffron, both in terms of quantity and quality.

Quality, a gateway to new markets
Indeed, the sales potential of producers’ organisations depends on the quality of saffron delivered. So, the challenge is to put in place a system to improve the quality of saffron, which is what Fatima-Zahra and An do. Find out more by pushing the doors of the Taliouine laboratory.


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Pick a player in the value chain and find out how (s)he contributes to its development.
Women, key players in the saffron value chain
Khadija, saffron producer
her story
A laboratory near producers
Fatima-Zahra, lab technician and An, biochemist
In search of new clients
Hassan, salesman
his story



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