Intercropping cocoa, oil palm and cashew crops with other food crops such as groundnuts, cassava, sweet potatoes, and vegetables is an innovative farming technique Solidaridad West Africa has introduced to farmer beneficiaries in Sierra Leone.
Besides the fact that this innovation provides farmers with food and additional income while they wait for the cash crops to mature, it also helps farmers focus more on their tree crops as they grow all their crops on the same piece of land. It is also a great way of maximizing the use of limited land space.
The Gualatima (Un-predictable) Women Farmers’ Cooperative in the Faala community in the Moyamba district, is one of such farmer groups that are engaged in growing vegetables in their cashew farms to support their homes and their farming activities. Mimie Pabai is the leader of the group, she says the proceeds from the sale of their vegetables have made them less dependent on their men. “The harvest we get from these food crops is a great source of support for our families. We feed on it. We also sell some to take care of the needs of our households and support our children’s education”, explains Mimie.
Solidaridad under the BAFS Project Sierra Leone funded by the European Union, is supporting the Gualatima Women Farmers’ Cooperative to cultivate over 200 acres of cashew across Bo and Moyamba districts in the Southern region of Sierra Leone.