Economic empowerment among female shea actors: the case of Savelugu District, Ghana

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Date
2024
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Cogent OA
Abstract
The shea industry is a catalyst for the economic empowerment of women engaged in this sector. However, we do not know the extent to which women actors are economically empowered along this value chain, and the factors impeding their empowerment. Addressing this is crucial to developing policies in advancing the economic empowerment of female shea actors. This study aims to assess the extent to which the shea industry economically empowers female shea actors. We utilized a convergent mixed-methods approach, gathering quantitative data from 384 female shea actors (including producers, collectors, and marketers) and qualitative data from 12 experienced older women in the industry, making an overall sample of 396. The qualitative data underwent thematic analysis, while the quantitative data were subjected to the non-parametric Kruskal-Wallis test to compare the level of economic empowerment among the three groups of shea actors. We found significant differences among the three groups of shea actors (χ2 (2) = 75.266, p = 0.000). Collectors had a mean rank of 236.60, marketers had a mean rank of 131.24, and producers had a mean rank of 205.31; showing economic empowerment varies among the shea actors. However, they face challenges of inaccessibility to land, finance, and markets, as well as inadequate storage facilities that affect their operations. We recommend that the shea actors join or form groups to increase their access to loans, and control over prices, while development agents (both statutory and non-statutory) must improve access to lands, finance, and storage facilities.
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Katsekpor, J.T., Adom-Asamoah, G. and Morgan, A.K., 2024. Economic empowerment among female shea actors: the case of Savelugu District, Ghana. Cogent Social Sciences, 10(1), p.2299105.
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