Coffee Cooperatives in Cameroon: An Assessment of the Causes of Coffee Cooperatives’ Collapse in the Post-adjustment Period

Part of the SpringerBriefs in Geography book series (BRIEFSGEOGRAPHY)


Coffee cooperative associations were the most important channels through which coffee farmers used to sell their commodities as well as receiving various forms of government assistance before the adoption of the market liberalisation policies in Cameroon . These forms of support included extension services, subsidies and in some cases social services such as healthcare and education. With the adoption of the liberalisation policies, the coffee commodity chain shifted from a chain regulated by the heavy hand of the state to the current one regulated by market forces. One of the key consequences was that this shift contributed to the collapse of the majority of coffee cooperatives. This chapter investigates the factors that contributed to the fall of the coffee cooperatives in the post liberalisation period in Cameroon . It argues that although the proximate causes of the collapse of the agricultural cooperatives can be attributed to the country’s macroeconomic policy shift from pre-adjustment to the post-adjustment period, the nature of the cooperative system as ‘government institutions’ in the pre-liberalised economy was its original sin that predisposed newly established cooperatives to an eventual collapse. As such, it is understandable that coffee cooperatives fell with government withdrawal from the economy after the country’s adoption of the IMF- and World Bank-imposed neoliberal macroeconomic policies.


Cooperatives Coffee cooperatives Market liberalisation Cameroon 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Worker’s CollegeDurbanSouth Africa

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