Day 18
1 m³ storage space for the harvest of a farming family in Bangladesh

Rice and Co.: everything under one roof! Rice and Co.: everything under one roof!

Reaping the fruits of one's own labour

When you let your eyes wander over the many small rice fields separated by mud walls in Bangladesh, you feel inner peace in the face of this idyllic, endless varieties of the colour green. Soothing after the hustle and bustle, the noise and dirt of the cities, where rubbish piles up along the streets and one gets a headache just looking at the loudly honking, jammed traffic. Small, neat fields, bamboo huts, pegged cows nibbling on rice straw. A group of children play tag, laughing and shrieking. One looks at the rice fields again - how beautiful the hard life looks. If one understands Bangladesh better, one sees the key to poverty in the countryside in this beauty: tiny, parcelled fields - that is all a landless family can afford as tenants. Nevertheless, they are beautiful, the fields.



Self-managed storage facilities for the harvest of smallholder farmers in Bangladesh



Local NGO provides building materials for warehouses to smallholder cooperatives

Countable effort


Number of smallholder families using 4 warehouses of different sizes in cooperatives, thus reducing their dependence on large landowners



At least 218 families improve their nutritional situation and increase their income

Systemic effect


Greater food security for smallholders and fairer trading conditions in rural Bangladesh


In Bangladesh, the most densely populated country in the world, almost 70% of the 166 million inhabitants still live as smallholders on the land (Bureau of Statistics, 2022). However, most smallholder families are landless, as land ownership is extremely unequal: 80% of the land belongs to 10% of the population (Sarker et al. 2021), a relic of the British colonial era when a minority obtained large tracts of land and ruled over the landless majority. To this day, smallholders rent the land on credit. But even then, their harvest does not belong to them: Lacking their own storage facilities, they are forced to sell their agricultural products directly after the harvest, when the price is lowest, to large landowners with appropriate storage facilities. Often they cannot even keep back the amount they would need to feed their own families. Thus, they have to pactically buy their own rice, at much higher prices from the market, after just a few weeks. The profits that smallholders can earn in this system of extreme dependence on large landowners and businessmen with capital, barely cover the costs of production. According to the Bangladesh IPC Chronic Food Insecurity Report (June 2022), 21% of the population is chronically hungry, or in other words: almost 35 million people are permanently undernourished – those who secure the population´s food supply through their work.

The good deed

The good deed is to increase the food security of landless smallholder families by giving them the opportunity to store enough rice for their own use and thereby decide for themselves when to sell their harvest. That's why your donation today will help smallholder families join together in cooperatives to build and use logistics, that no one could afford on their own. 80 families jointly build a warehouse out of bamboo, wood and corrugated iron and use it collectively. A family in the village that has land not suitable for agriculture, for example due to it being very shady, makes this land available for construction in exchange for rent. All cooperative members, women and men, save €1 per month, which is used to cover the land rent and other costs. By storing their produce independently, the families are able to decide when to sell it and have enough rice for their own needs.

Nakla, Sherpur District

About Bangladesh






Number of inhabitants



Gross domestic product per capita per year



Human Development Index

Christmas in Bangladesh is called "Borodin". Instead of fir trees, the small Christian minority decorates banana trees and Father Christmas comes by bicycle instead of a sleigh.