The Beni Mellal-Khenifra region is characterized by its natural diversity, due to its composition of both mountains and plains. This results in a variety of activities of the population, which are influenced by the geographical and natural aspect of the region.

The cooperative sector in the region also shows a marked diversity. Indeed, there are forestry cooperatives located in mountainous areas, particularly for the cultivation of carob trees and the exploitation of forest products.  Additionally, agricultural activities such as livestock breeding and beekeeping have benefited from support from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (FIDA) agricultural program.

The province of Azilal has seen, in recent years, the development of saffron cultivation as a complementary activity aimed at promoting job creation and generating value. It is important to note that women in the rural region are known for their determination and active participation in the local economy, particularly through textile production, sewing and carpet making.

The tourism sector is also largely present through tourism cooperatives in touristic areas such as Chalalat Ouzoud, Zaouiet Ahensal, as well as the Ait Bouguemaz valley. The handicraft sector, also strongly present in the region, is distinguished by its great diversity, notably with pottery in Demnat and the production of carpets, each with its own particularities.

In addition, the plain area is characterized by the cultivation of olive trees, the valorization of agricultural products, as well as the collection of milk.

In conclusion, the region has a large number of cooperatives, each unique and differing from province to province. In this context, the province of Azilal stands out for holding a significant number of cooperatives, followed by the province of Beni Mellal, while the province of Fquih Ben Saleh comes in last position.

Additionally, it should be noted that the cooperative sector is mainly dominated by the agricultural sector, which accounts for more than 66% of all cooperatives. In second place we find the handicraft sector, followed in last position by the services and agricultural sector, the majority of the latter being cooperatives managed by women.

Cooperatives play an essential role in promoting sustainable development, economic growth and social inclusion. Cooperative entrepreneurship offers numerous opportunities for varied economic and social projects, which also contributes, among other things, to the fight against poverty and social exclusion, and to the integration of small producers into the market.


«Motatawi3» Program

As part of the partnership with the Ministry of Youth, Culture and Communication, and in the context of the “Motatawi3” program, the regional delegation of ODCO in Beni Mellal organized a coordination meeting on 1st of August 2023.

The meeting was an opportunity to present the expectations of volunteers while examining the activities and specific needs of cooperatives in the region. The objective is to ensure optimal correspondence between volunteers and cooperatives, so that everyone can contribute effectively to the development of local cooperative projects.

This matching process was well received, and included an active participation from several cooperatives who showed great interest in engaging volunteers. This coordination meeting contributed to strengthening the cooperation between the local contributors of the region, thus promoting better integration of young people into the cooperative economy of the Beni Mellal-Khénifra region.

International Day of Cooperatives

On the International Day of Cooperatives, the regional delegation of ODCO in Beni Mellal organized a day of celebration on July 13, 2023. This event was held in collaboration with the Lekrazza association Littanmia Aljihaouia, based in Beni Mellal, and took place at the headquarters of the Regional Chamber of Agriculture of Beni Mellal.

The central theme of this day was “Cooperatives serving sustainable development”.

Many representatives of cooperatives, as well as members of technical administrations and the associative sector, took part in this event. The agenda included a presentation of the situation of the cooperative sector at the regional level by the ODCO delegation, highlighting the challenges it was facing. In addition, other speakers from local administrations addressed the theme of cooperative entrepreneurship.

Finally, a lively debate enriched the discussions and led to concrete recommendations, particularly with regard to financial support for cooperatives and assistance with their product’s marketing strategies.

Training session on the proper functioning of cooperatives

As part of the implementation of the partnership agreement between ODCO, The National Office of Agricultural Council (ONCA), and other partners. The ODCO regional delegation in Béni Mellal organized a training session aiming at improving the proper functioning of cooperatives in collaboration with the Aghbala Agricultural Council Center and under the supervision of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (FIDA) project.

This event took place for the benefit of women’s cooperatives which were beneficiaries of the FIDA program, a program which aims to improve the economic and social situation of women in rural areas. This training session recorded a significant participation of cooperative members, which demonstrates the interest generated by this initiative.


Partnership agreement with the association “ Lekrazza liitanmia »

As part of its strategy of proximity to citizens and support for cooperative project leaders, the ODCO regional delegation in Beni Mellal has taken the initiative to diversify its partnerships, in particular by actively collaborating with the associative sector. This approach aims to facilitate access for citizens and cooperative project leaders to the information and resources necessary for the creation and management of cooperatives. Thus, the delegation established a partnership agreement with the Lekrazza association Liitanmia , located in Beni Mellal. This mutually beneficial collaboration is based on the delegation’s commitment to raising awareness and training the cooperative project leaders mobilized by the association. This awareness includes an in-depth explanation of the cooperative as defined by law 112-12, highlighting its fundamental principles and the essential elements that constitute it. This initiative aims to strengthen the understanding of project leaders of the functioning of cooperatives and to encourage their active involvement in this key sector of local economic development.

Successful cooperative models

Slide 1
SANAD agricultural cooperative

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The SANAD agricultural cooperative is a women's cooperative whose aim is the valorization of agricultural products. It is located in the province of Beni Mellal, in Ouled Mbarek.
It was formed in 2013 and brings together 46 women from the same locality in order to improve their economic and social situations, and thus enable them to satisfy their needs.
Since its creation, the cooperative has focused on promoting local products as well as natural products from other neighboring regions. The rigor demonstrated by the cooperative led to a request for support from the INDH (National Initiative of Human Development) , which provided the necessary materials. This approach aroused the interest of other organizations, encouraging them to support the cooperative in terms of training and technical assistance, with the aim of increasing its turnover.
In this context, the cooperative, with the support of the INDH and local authorities, acquired a space dedicated to the sale of its agricultural products, while adopting an elaborate marketing strategy to get closer to consumers. The cooperative's active participation in local, provincial and even international fairs has greatly contributed to the development of the cooperative's commercial reputation.

Slide 1
MANAHIL AL MAGHREB agricultural cooperative

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The MANAHIL AL MAGHREB agricultural beekeeping cooperative is located in the commune of FOUM JEMAA, province of AZILAL, and was founded in 2016 by five beekeepers from the same locality. Due to its location in a mountainous area, the cooperative offers a wide variety of products, making it a benchmark in the exploitation of the region's natural resources. This product diversification has contributed to the growth of the cooperative, particularly in the production of honey. So much so that the number of hives has surpassed the thousand mark, prompting the cooperative to expand its facilities, including the construction of a dedicated honey production unit.
This development of the unit led the cooperative to adopt a strategy of expansion of its activities, exploring the valorization of other agricultural products with the aim of generating increased interest among consumers.

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