Farmer’s organizations in Bangladesh: a mapping and capacity assessment
Farmers’ organizations (FOs) in Bangladesh have the potential to be true partners in, rather than “beneficiaries”
of, the development process. FOs bring to the table a deep knowledge of the local context, a nuanced
understanding of the needs of their communities and strong social capital. Increasing the engagement of FOs
in the investment programming cycle will strengthen food and nutrition security in Bangladesh.
With this in mind, the Technical Assistance (TA) Component of the Integrated Agricultural Productivity
Project (IAPP), implemented by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), conducted
a mapping and capacity assessment exercise. The goal was to fill the knowledge gap around FOs in Bangladesh,
identify the main constraints FOs face to get involved in investment planning and programming, and propose
The mapping team met a variety of FOs, as well as non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and Government
bodies involved in the formation of FOs. The team conducted 38 key informant interviews, 18 focus group discussions and 31 organization visits.
During the exercise, 198114 FOs of various types were identified. Eighty-one percent were formed with
support from government agencies, 14 percent from national NGOs, 5 percent from international NGOs, and
less than 0.01 percent – only 12 organizations – were formed autonomously. Just over 2 percent of FOs are
federated at any level.