When the Philippine Family Farmers’ Agriculture Fishery Forestry Cooperatives Federation or AgriCOOPh started their Coops4Food Program in 2020, they developed a coop-to-coop model linking producers’ cooperatives with consumers’ cooperatives, organizations, and community associations. This model allows more consumers to efficiently access fresh food products from producers’ cooperatives, which in turn could lead to better food choices and diet.
Through the coop-to-coop model, AgriCOOPh participates in bidding for agricultural products or accepting purchase requests from consumer cooperatives, organizations, and community associations. They then forward these requests to producers’ cooperatives that gather commodities from family farmers. AgriCOOPh members then deliver the commodities, ensure these meet the agreed terms and conditions of buyers, collect payments, and pay producers’ cooperatives.
In implementing their Coop-to-Coop model, AgriCOOPh has noted an increase in volume of food procurement, establishment of long-term relationships between cooperatives, cost reduction through standardization of products and service specifications, strong connections between producers and consumers, and improvement in the public and private procurement process.
While AgriCOOPh continues to face challenges in the implementation of their coop-to-coop model, lessons have also been learned since the inception of the Coops4Food Program in 2020. AgriCOOPh also recommends the waiver of payment for bidding from cooperatives, exemption from the 3% withholding tax, more financing and strengthening of farmer-level enterprises.
Source: Asia Pacific Farmers’ Forum. (2022). PHILIPPINES – Empowering Family Farmer-Members through Coop-to-Coop Cooperations. Available at https://asiapacificfarmersforum.net/philippines-empowering-family-farmer-members-through-coop-to-coop-cooperations/?fbclid=IwAR0AUbEauQ3N_sf0h_e1hSK9JKnB_bv3fiNhGFRkzs_WqCysHTlqqAjMZXc
Photo Credit: Asia Pacific Farmers’ Forum and Philippine Family Farmers’ Agriculture Fishery Forestry Cooperatives Federation