Getrade - FPS

Getrade- FPS The annual Straw programme 2002/2003

For the forth time now, Getrade-FPS has carried out the annual straw programme. This season it involved the following:

- 2 Mio Cedis Straw Donation for Accra Weavers NEW !
- 8 Mio Cedis Straw Donation for Bolga Weavers
- 10 Mio Cedis Straw Loan for Accra Weavers NEW !
- 30 Mio Cedis Straw Loan for Bolga weavers

straw presentation
dyed straw
straw bundles stored

In details:

  COST Cedis no. of bundles cost p. b.
Straw loan Accra 7,995 Mio Cedis 4100 1,950
Straw loan Bolga 29,861 Mio Cedis 12700 2,350
Straw donation Accra 1,95 Mio Cedis 1000  
Straw donation Bolga 7,99 Mio. Cedis 3400  
8800 Cedis = 1 US $ ; 9800 Cedis = 1 Euro ; 22.7.2003

The straw purchase - a full truck for Bolgatanga and a large truck for Accra- was done in Kumasi at the cost of 1860 Cedis per bundle averagely. The extra costs - loaders, carriers, tying rope, storage at the market, night watchmen, transport - were higher than the previous year. This is attributed to the high cost of the truck to Bolga, which was 133% higher (7 Mio Cedis). Whilst in Accra 88 % of the total cost was straw cost and only 12 % attributed to extra cost, in Bolga the straw was only 78% and extra cost were 22 %.
So the value for a bundle in Accra will be 1950 Cedis, and in Bolga it is 2351 Cedis.

The straw loan is to be used during the lean season, when the straw is scarce (December to March). Abu Sadik, who also monitors and repays the given straw loan of 30 Mio Cedis, stores the straw.
A total of 12700 bundles of straw, an amount to produce 4233 average baskets is there for our weavers to use.

For the risk (storage, spoilage, shortage, theft, smaller bundles, accountability) he adds about 12 % to the price of the bundle. So a bundle purchased in Kumasi now at the average cost of 1,860 Cedis and the transport cost reaching a cost of 2,351 Cedis per bundle.
Sales to the weaver is calculated at 2,400 Cedis in December to March. This time of the year the bundle is usually sold at 3000 Cedis. At the actual season in January 2004, straw was sold at 3500 Cedis in Accra.
In 2003 for the first time the weavers in Accra also participate in the programme: The straw is brought to Getrade warehouse, and the weavers and their leaders are in charge. Here 4100 bundles are there for the weavers, at the cost of 1950 Cedis, which includs already all costs. Their advantage is even more, as a bundle in Accra then will cost 4000 Cedis, whilst the bundle with the loan from FPS will be available at 2000 Cedis only.

The straw donation is Getrade-FPS annual contribution towards the Bonus of the Society. With the straw donated to the weavers last year they were able to produce average of 7 baskets each. According to numeric this year's donation should be sufficient for each weaver to make 5 baskets with free material, because their number has been increased.

The straw donation to the groups was done 28th July 2003 at Abu Sadik's house.

This programme is helping our weavers in a time where famine is at a close: The last stored foods (millet) are finished, the new harvest not ready yet and a very low volume of orders for baskets to obtain cash income.
So our 235 weavers in Gambigo, 220 in Sumbrungu and 260 weavers in Nyarga have a definite advantage to weave with us.

After finalising weaver`s registration into the Society during 2003 we are even more assured of an useful undertaking by their leaders.

We are glad that we have carried out this programme for a sustainable development of our weavers in the 4th year and we had no major draw-back with it. The 10 days long purchase, transport and distribution and presentation of the straw was handled by 3 members of the FPS Board, with the involvement of Abu Sadik , our Bolga Basket Organiser as well as Miss Felicia Sampana, Development officer for FPS and selected weaving group leaders. Mdm Stella Aduku and Mr. James Akakuku came along from Accra to arrange the Accra part of the straw. Mr. Sulley Aberinga and Mr. Bright Adentara were selected by the weavers to do the purchases for the Bolga weavers. They accompanied Abu Sadik from Bolga.

I - as the Marketing Woman - of the Baskets have to extend my full gratitude to our Board members, the Development officer and the basket leaders for their dedicated involvement in this exercise:

- To be for hours at Bantama Market and the northern settlements at Race course in Kumasi, surrounded by several straw sellers, big bundles and small bundles and still having the overview of having purchased the correct straw quality (length, dryness, thickness, colour).
- To even carry the straw whilst supervising loading and on transport to central storage points to reduce theft and extra cost.
- To present and share the straw equally to almost 715 weavers within a day. - To be able to organise the straw programme for Accra for the first time

To complete the whole exercise an informal training was done with the weavers and it involved the following:
- The creation of 10 new Basket forms and colour schemes.
- The theme for 2004 will be stripes.
- Learning by doing on colour schemes (rainbow colours).
- Introduction of colour consistancy
- This exercise is paid by Getrade-FPS, who purchase the Baskets at normal prices and also provide sample allowances.

The exercise with training workshops and straw presentation was continued during the month of August with our 18 groups in Accra. The result is a most astonishing collection of new basket colours and forms.

Rosmarie Boos Getrade-FPS, Marketing 2003-07-28