On March 3, I (Jeffrey) went out to Kirehe, Eastern Province, to visit two agricultural cooperatives: Banana and Rice. This trip was part of John Magnay's three-day trip to Rwanda to explore the Rwandan opportunities in agricultural finance, following the London meeting. (Feb. 22-24) John Magnay is the Special Advisor to OI Africa on Agriculture. (Please refer to previous posts on London meeting and John Magnay.)
The banana cooperative has approximately 4,000 members in the sector and many members have a cow primarily for the purpose of producing organic manure for the bananas.
The rice cooperative has 1,865 active members and 2,500 potential members. All grow rice with flooded water in the swamp. The size of their paddy rice field was quite small, but through crop intensification they have been increasing the yields.
The road to successful agricultural finance is long and challenging, but with careful persistence we trust that we will get there. - Jeffrey