GROW LIBERIA
INSIGHTS

 

 Tapper at a Rubber Farm

Tapper at a Rubber Farm

Hidden Roles but Visible Value: Women in the Rubber Sector in Liberia

Rubber is widely perceived as a predominately male sector in Liberia. Men are found in highly visible roles as farm owners and tappers and dominate activities that provide better income, such as selling rubber or supervisory positions.

This does not mean, however, that women are absent from the sector.

 RSS Processing at Bright Rubber Farm, Margibi

RSS Processing at Bright Rubber Farm, Margibi

RSS: How rubber processing is bringing profit to an ailing industry

Ribbed Smoked Sheets (RSS) are a semi-processed rubber product most commonly produced in Southeast Asia, but it’s becoming a growing trend in Liberia.

GROW is supporting a handful of entrepreneurs to demonstrate that RSS Processing can bring lucrative returns to investors whilst simultaneously pulling some of Liberia’s poorest people out of poverty.     

 Oil Palm Farm

Oil Palm Farm

Paving the way for an Outgrower Scheme in Liberia’s Oil Palm Sector

Accountable and transparent investments in land have the potential to provide economic opportunities, as well as an increased local tax base and infrastructure funding

 Elizabeth Seka, Cocoa Farmer

Elizabeth Seka, Cocoa Farmer

Certification: the key to transforming Liberia’s cocoa sector?

Elizabeth Seka, 56, is one of thousands of farmers producing cocoa in the bush around Buutuo. She works with her 16-year old daughter on her two-acre farm. Last year they produced 40 kilos of cocoa, having lost 90 percent of their crop to pests. But that’s not the only problem.

“Everyone suffers from the same problem of no fixed price,” she says. “I do not get a good price for my cocoa sales, only 90 Liberian dollars per kilo.” Elizabeth earned the equivalent of 40 USD last season which is not enough to provide for her seven children. “As well as cocoa I also farm rice to eat as otherwise we do not have food,” she explains. 

Elizabeth’s story is typical among cocoa farmers in Liberia and poverty levels are extremely high. This is due to a market weakened by a lack of regulation and prices that do not consider quality differentiation.