Home Institution

George Washington University

Publication Date

Spring 2014

Program Name

Cameroon: Social Pluralism and Development


Cameroon is qualified as an import dependent country, meaning it relies on imported food to feed its population. Specifically, Cameroon imports over 80% of its rice consumption, spending 145 billion French CFA on rice imports yearly. But, Cameroon has sufficient untapped arable land and a large enough agriculturally centered population to produce adequate rice quantities to meet demand without relying on imports. This paper examines the challenges facing rice farmers in Cameroon in the context of import dependence and why local farmers cannot currently produce enough rice to meet local demand, focusing on the experience of the rice farming community in Santchou. I found that the main challenges inhibiting sufficient rice production facing rice farmers are: poor infrastructure, rudimentary equipment, birds, and a lack of financing. Furthermore, this paper explores what initiatives are already practiced that support Cameroonian rice production. I explain how UGERILCOPAM, the Santchou rice farmers union, allows for the cultivation and sale of Santchou rice, in addition to discussing its relationship with civil society and government actors. Finally, makes proposals for the future, acknowledging the government must take action both to support local rice production and end corruption, which currently drains financing opportunities.


Agricultural and Resource Economics | Growth and Development | Public Policy | Social Welfare


Article Location