Federation of farmers and pastoralists of Rwanda (IMBARAGA) and Syndicat rwandais des agriculteurs et éleveurs (INGABO)










Federation of farmers and pastoralists of Rwanda (IMBARAGA)


Address:Quartier Kimihurura, Kigali, Rwanda

Postal address:PO. Box 1462, Kigali, Rwanda


Phone: +250 08 626 228 / + 250 788 574 644

Coordinator: Juvenal MUSINE


Geographical coverage. IMBARAGAs members are located throughout the 5 provinces of Rwanda.

Date and Context of creation

Date of creation: 1992 with official recognition in the 1st of September 2006

IMBARAGA is a trade union organisation which was created at the initiative of farmers and herders in Rwanda.

Membership. IMBARAGA is a farmers’ organisation and has 94,324 farmer members. Six out of ten members are small-scale farmers who cultivate no more than 0.5 hectares. Almost all the rest (37%) have 0.5 to 2 hectares; only 3% have more. The members are associated either into informal groups of 25 to 30 households or into cooperatives with 10 to 80 members.

Objective/mission of the NFO

IMBARAGA is a trade-union organisation

Objectives. As a Federation of farmers and pastoralists, the objective is increase professionalism and foster contractor performances, competitive socio - economic exchanges, and self-sufficient grassroots organisations.

Main activities

a)      Training farmers

IMBARAGA operates a full training centre in Musanze, in northern Rwanda, that has the capacity to train 200 farmers a day. With a staff of 22 full-time employees and 50 part-time agronomists, they work to improve the technical capacity of their member farmers. IMBARAGA also runs training programmes at its training facility in Cyuve (Northern Province), through farmer field schools, and by organising farmer visits. The organisation’s team of agronomists do most of the training and provide extension services. External specialists give specialized trainings on subjects such as processing.

b)      Selling inputs and equipment to farmers.

IMBARAGA purchases in bulk from major suppliers and resells to input dealers, who in turn sell the inputs to farmers.

c)      Marketing of farmers’ produce.

IMBARAGA helps its members synchronize the production, management and harvesting of crops, sets up collection centres, and organises the processing and packaging of the crops for delivery to large buyers. It buys maize, wheat and beans from farmers (including large farmers who are not members), bulks the product, and sells it to large buyers such as the World Food Programme, big traders, the Rwanda Agricultural Board and the Strategic Grain Reserve.

IMBARAGA assists local potato-producing associations to form federations that lobby for their interests and negotiate with the private sector. Cooperatives are created and storage facilities are built to organise the multiplication of improved (registered) potato seeds and to improve access to inputs and marketing of produce. IMBARAGA staff and researchers from agricultural research institutions started on-farm trials. On a more extensive scale, the District Agricultural Extension Service and IMBARAGA developed a farmer-to-farmer extension programme. Farmer extensionists are selected and trained to organise meetings of both community-based and potato-producing organisations. Producers were informed about market norms and standards, as well as useful technologies.


a) Membership to other networks or agricultural platforms

IMBARAGA is a member of the Eastern African Farmer Federation (EAFF).

b) Partnerships

National partners:

IMBARAGA has developed linkages with the Ministry of agriculture.

International partners:

SFOAP (IFAD, the European Union (EU), The Swiss Development Agency (SDC), the Agence Française de Développement (AFD). IMBARAGA participates in the Support to Farmers Organization in Africa Programme (SFOAP) as a member of the EAFF.

International Fertilizer Development Center(IFDC). IMBARAGA is a partner within the CATALIST project that trained technicians and farmers in integrated soil fertility management (ISFM) and other best practices. Project demonstration sites showed the importance of using quality fertilizers and improved seeds.

Others partners: International Potato Center (CIP), FAO, Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA)

Main resources and documents

FANE I., KRIBES R., NDIMURWANGO P., NSENGIYUMVA V. NZANG OYONO C., WENNINK B. Linking potato production and marketing. ROPARWA and IMBARAGA initiatives in North-Western Rwanda. Available here

BANCIE & NSANGANIRA. Agricultural Business and Enterprises Development Services over the Last 50 years and Vision for the future.  Available here




Syndicat rwandais des agriculteurs et éleveurs (INGABO)


Postal address:P.O. BOX 50, Muhanga Gitarama Rwanda


Phone: +250 562667/ +250 08450957

Chairman: Bellancille NYIRAMSABIMANA

Coordinator: Pierre NYANDWI


Date and Context of creation

Date of creation: January 1992, officially recognised as of April 30th, 2004

INGABO was established in January 1992 by pastoralists of the former Gitarama province to defend their interests. Its development coincided with a time of war and the birth of multiparty politics in Rwanda. For these reasons, Rwandan farmer unity was threatened thus the need to federate their interests. Indeed, the interests of farmers and ranchers of the former Gitarama province were increasingly neglected by the absence of defence structures.

Legal status. Cfr OJ. 07 of April 1, 2005

Membership. INGABO has a 14.397 members, of which 56% are women and 44% men.

Objective/mission of the NFO

Mission. The mission of the INGABO union is to make each micro pastoralist a competitive economic operator, today and tomorrow, at the regional, inter-regional, national, and international market levels.

Objectives. INGABO Union's objectives are:

- Mobilise agricultural workers, farmers and pastoralists into a force capable of promoting and defending their occupational interests;

- Train and inform agricultural workers, farmers and pastoralists to be able to improve their operations;

- Uphold the unity and cooperation of farmers and pastoralists;

- Participate in the study of problems and take part in all the related decision making processes;

- Encourage and support agricultural workers, farmers and pastoralists to implement socio-collective programmes to ensure the promotion of all of their interests.

- Promote agriculture and livestock breeding given its importance for national development.

Strategic plan 2012-2014. This plan focuses on the development of agricultural industries including cassava, pineapple, maize, soybean and dairy cattle units. The current plan has three main objectives: (i) Increase agricultural production, (ii) Marketing of agricultural production at remunerative prices which will allow the producers to meet their needs (basic needs, savings, etc.), (iii) Provide services that enhance member self confidence and help them to increase their economic resources.

Main activities[1]

Main activities: capacity building

Capacity building.

Training. INGABO implements training for them farmers in:

-          Management (leadership, entrepreneurship, planning, project management);

-          Farming techniques (erosion control, seed propagation techniques);

-          Cross issues (gender, development);

-          Land law.

With the Rural Sector Support Project (RSSP), INGABO strengthened maize cooperatives through trainings on cooperative organisations, business plan and management of small businesses and cooperatives.

Karemanos. INGABO provides support and advice to its members through a network of 60 development leaders, well trained and adequate salaries. They are responsible for the self-promotion and self-development trainings of members in line with the aim to bolster entrepreneurship. INGABO has established a system of volunteer contact farmers who give advice to their colleagues. In 656 of the province’s 1100 cells, the local organs of the union elected two facilitator farmers, including one working in the field of crop production (the 'karemanos'; those born with agricultural skills) and the other in the field of livestock production (the 'mwungelis'; pastors/shepherds). In all, this created a network of more than 1,300 animator farmers for a total of 26,000 member farmers – approximately one animator for every 20 members.


a) Membership to other networks or agricultural platforms

INGABO is a member of the Eastern African Farmer Federation (EAFF).

b) Partnerships

National partners:

INGABO is a member of the Réseau des Organisations Paysannes du Rwanda (ROPARWA) and has links with IMBARAGA.

International partners:

SFOAP (IFAD, the European Union (EU), The Swiss Development Agency (SDC), the Agence Française de Développement (AFD). IMBARAGA participated in the Support to Farmers Organization in Africa Programme as a member of the EAFF.

AGRITERRA within the project of economic strengthening of Gacacas (local branch off of INGABO), which helped train "Karemanos", animator farmers in charge of supporting their fellow farmers.

Agriculture, développement international (AFDI) within the context ofa project for trade union capacity building.

USAID within the context of aost-harvest and handling storage project (provision of technical assistance in the production of dry cassava chips and good, consistent quality cassava flour with long shelf lives).

Main resources and publications

APPELDOORN G. En avant les “Karemano”, mission d’appui chez INGABO. December 2011. Available here

MBABAZI F.X. INGABO, pionner dans la lute contre la mosaique, in Vers une agriculture rentable et competitive. January 2008. Available here