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Title:Contract farming and capital accumulation in Cameroon: the case of the CDC smallholder schemes
Author:Konings, PietISNI
Book title:Itinéraires d'accumulation au Cameroun = Pathways to accumulation in Cameroon / sous la dir. de Peter Geschiere et Piet Konings. - Paris [etc.]: Karthala [etc.]
Geographic term:Cameroon
Subjects:development corporations
contract farming
small farms
External link:https://hdl.handle.net/1887/4606
Abstract:Contract farming schemes associated with agro-industrial enterprises have been of a more limited scope in Cameroon than in several other Third World countries, and largely unsuccessful. The Cameroonian experience with contract farming therefore poses an interesting challenge to modernization theorists who have tried to impress upon Third World governments that an expansion of contract farming schemes might boost peasant productivity and living standards. In this case study the experience of the Cameroon Development Corporation (CDC) with various forms of contract farming is evaluated. Two periods are distinguished: the period of contract farming preceding the World Bank scheme (1946/1947-1977/1978), and the period from the implementation of the World Bank scheme to 1987 (1977/1978-1986/1987). This evaluation of the CDC smallholders' schemes provides some of the principal reasons for the rather limited and unsuccessful experience with contract farming in Cameroon. Firstly, there is the rather ambiguous attitude of the government and CDC management towards smallholder development. Secondly, there is the precarious dependence on commodity prices on the domestic and international markets. Thirdly, there is the problem of establishing control over the schemes. Feeling exploited, the participants opposed managerial efforts to gain control over production and exchange. They regularly engaged in a variety of modes of resistance. Note, ref.