Support to the Mousso Faso Cooperative (women tiger nuts growers)

Location: Kimpi (Gaoua) - Burkina Faso
Status: Ongoing. 

Duration: March 2019 - March 2021 (approx.)
Local counterpart: ASFES (Association Solidaire avec les Femmes et les Enfant au Sahel)

Improvement of the agricultural production of organic tiger nut through the empowerment of female farmers and the use of appropriate methodologies in Kimpi (Burkina Faso). Moving towards food sovereignty.

Check here the evolution of the project.

The Mousso Faso Cooperative (from now on, MFC) was born in 2017 with the aim of developing and promoting the cultivation of organic tiger nut with the appropriate methodologies, as well as improving local production and export capacities, especially among women, who have traditionally worked in this agricultural sector in Burkina Faso. The main line of action is to develop an organic and fair-trade crop that allows producer families and local communities to live in dignity. In the same way, the aim is to improve the appalling working conditions in which the local cultivation of tiger nuts has been carried out until today by women, as shown in the documentary film "Tigernut. La Patria de las Mujeres Íntegras" (Tigernut. The Homeland of Whole Women).

For years, the tiger nut producing families of Burkina Faso have been victims of abusive foreign trade practices, in which the farming families were exploited by companies from Western countries that consented to extreme working conditions in which the women worked under continuous inhalation of dust, in a climate reaching temperatures between 30 and 45°C (86 and 113°F), without any safety protection against dust inhalation or to avoid scorpion stings (great tiger nut lovers), snake bites or the scorching sun during long working days.

The MFC was born with several objectives:
- To promote the organic cultivation and fair-trade of tiger nuts.
- To improve the working conditions of women.
- To provide tools and increase the degree of mechanisation in order to reduce the hardness of the work.
- To unite small farming families in Burkina Faso in order to meet the growing demand for organic tiger nuts on international markets.
- To join forces on the road of food sovereignty.

In short, the aim is to create an organisational structure that will enable them to have decent employment. 95% of the beneficiaries are women from different ethnic groups, and the Cooperative was founded precisely to promote the role of women in the development of communities, promoting a crop historically associated with women, and eliminating, as far as possible, intermediaries who do not add value to the chain.

We carry out this project together with our local counterpart, the ASFES (Association Solidaire avec les Femms et les Enfants au Sahel), a partner with whom we have been working for many years on various cooperation projects.

To promote the project from CIM Burkina and during all this time, we have contacted universities, agricultural personnel, town councils, and potential clients and cooperatives. As a result, we have obtained the support of several city councils (Valencia, Santa Coloma de Gramenet, Torrent, Aspe, Aldaia, and Sagunto), of the Canaria Naranjo Galván Foundation, as well as the support of dozens of anonymous people and small companies that made various contributions through a crowdfunding initiative, as well as other private donations.

This project is divided into two phases, corresponding to the cooperative's production campaign of 2019/2020 (phase 1) and to the already started campaign of 2020/2021 (phase 2). The objective is to keep alive the centuries-old tradition of tiger nut cultivation, while generating decent employment for families in this region, significantly improving the working conditions of women producers, and moving towards food sovereignty with a local product of millenary origin, with the empowerment of local communities.

Therefore, this project makes the development of local communities possible, generating dignified employment that will enable families to get ahead by their own means, ensuring for the community in general, and for women in particular, access to fundamental rights such as education and health.

We are talking here about a viable, and above all, sustainable project which ties in with a dozen of the Sustainable Development Goals - SDGs (on 25, September 2015, world leaders adopted a set of global goals to eradicate poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all as part of a new sustainable development agenda; each goal has specific targets to be achieved over the next 15 years).

We can thus highlight that among the objectives of the Mousso Faso Cooperative figures the reinvestment of potential profits in education and health, including training for the elderly, creation of school infrastructures, etc., which is perfectly in line with our statutory aims. 

From CIM Burkina, we are relentlessly seeking funding for the successful completion of the project. 


Co-financed by:

- Torrent City Council: 5,000 €
- Santa Coloma de Gramenet City Council: 5,000 €
- Aldaia: 19,289.37 €
- EUPV (Esquerra Unida del País Valencià):5,500 €
- Sagunto City Council: 17,225.30 €
- Canaria Naranjo Galván Foundation: 3,000 €
- Aspe City Council: 7,465.82
- Valencia City Council: 59,899.22 €