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Abstract

Ensuring food security today in Cameroon is a key but not an easy task for government. This is because the country is experiencing high rural exodus and urban growth rates. The result is a continual reduction of the agricultural labour force in the face of an increasing demand for food. Women food crop entrepreneurs can play an important role in filling the gap created by this phenomenon. The activities of these female entrepreneurs have given rise to a booming food crop enterprise within the informal sector of the Fako Division, Cameroon. The informal sector is accommodating lots of women whose gender profile disqualified them from formal sector activities. Unfortunately, these female entrepreneurs cannot operate effectively because of problems inherent to the informal sector, especially following the implementation of the structural adjustment program in Cameroon, and the absence of an enabling socio-economic environment, particularly in Fako. This study however, observes that because female food entrepreneurs have very few employment alternatives, they are forced to implement coping strategies, which although vital in maintaining them in the sector, do not usually measure up to the challenges. But since the activities of these women have impacts beyond micro levels, government and other agents of development cannot afford to abandon these women.

Note on the Author

Lotsmart N. Fonjong lectures in the Department of Women and Gender Studies, University of Buea. Cameroon.

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