Improved economic information

The national Federation of Agricultural Producers of Burkina Faso (FEPA/B) constitutes of 37 provincial unions, representing a total of 241,261 group members in 6,133 base groups (a little over 50% of them women). FEPA/B aims to reinforce the economic services for its members and has created two sectoral unions, one for “fruits and vegetables”, the other for “dry cereals”. It runs programmes on business advisory services for family farms, collective purchase of inputs and group marketing of agricultural products (including warehousing).

FEPA/B has access to a variety of economic data about markets, prices, production, farm economics. However, it experienced difficulties in organising this variety of data in an accessible way and in turning it into useful information. FEPA/B wanted to better exploit its data to improve its economic services to members and to strengthen its economic advocacy. Therefore, the research project first assessed the current use of data and information within FEPA/B. Subsequently, it proposed tools for data processing and presentation that FEPA/B can use for its services to members and for its economic advocacy.

Main outcomes

A thorough and in-depth synthesis of information needs and related strategies based on two types of information: those of an economic or commercial nature and those of a technical nature.

 Main conclusions

  • The discovery an information system for the FO including its achievements, its potential and its weaknesses.
  • The discovery of a diversity of information needs related to the plurality of actors involved.
  • The need for a multidisciplinary team.

 FEPA/B is proud of

    • To have experience with collaborative Research.
    • Discovery of an information (monitoring) tool applicable to the FEPA/B context.
    • Estbalished dialogue between field (practice) and research
    • The constant concern for the sustainability of the monitoring(tool).

 Lessons learnt

  • to never conduct action research with producers during the rainy season
  • Not to select members of the research team who are too busy.