Plate Forme Paysanne du Niger (PFPN; in English, ‘Farmer’s Platform of Niger’) is a framework for the reflection, dialogue and action of farmer organisations in Niger. PFPN includes 25 farming organisations, federations, unions, cooperatives and groups and is represented through a national coordination office as well as many regional, departmental and local coordination offices.
PFPN is a framework for consultation and action, which offers services to its members and influences the policies and strategies for rural development at the national, regional and international level.
For Nigerien farmers there are two critical times of the year - the rainy and winter seasons - and PFPN works to prevent and manage any potential conflicts that arise during these times. During the rainy season tension can arise from some farmers blocking communal access to grazing land. Further tension is seen in the winter season where farmers refuse to release fields to be replanted with new crops. This is tackled by PFPN through their dual approach of consultation and education for members. PFPN also works to tackle access to suitable water, a constant source of conflict among farmers.
The organisation is working to improve the living conditions and prevent conflict between rural producers by:
- Strengthening organisational and institutional capacities to ensure efficient provision of quality services to farmer organisation members;
- Negotiating and facilitating input supply services to rural producers at the national and international level;
- Influencing the benefit of farmers and ensuring equitable access of young people, women and marginalized groups to natural resources;
- Influencing policies, plans, programs, strategies and projects for rural development;
- Initiating and facilitating spaces for discussion and dialogue on key rural issues;
- Promoting the protection and restoration of the environment and the conservation of local genetic heritage;
- Promoting the emergence of cooperation and thus conflict prevention in areas within PFPN.
PFPN organised several farmer days, bringing together those involved in rural agriculture to discuss and exchange views on rural issues. The organisation is also a member of the Network of Farmers' and Agricultural Producers' Organisations of West Africa (ROPPA) and is accredited by the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO).
PFPN is also working on the forthcoming Economic Partnership Agreement between the EU and Ecowas, with many Nigerien farmers worried about the impact it could have on their livelihoods.