Farma Kosić is an example of a successful incentive for farmers

30.12.2021. / 14:10

BANJA LUKA – At the Kosić farm in Pervan near Banja Luka, they spend the first days of winter working and without rest because they need to provide food for cows and calves, and store and prepare milk for sale. Dragana Kosić with her husband, and several workers who are occasionally hired, raise cattle and cultivate the land, and she has improved the business she has run over the years with the help of incentives for agricultural production.

Photo: Dragana Kosić / author Goran Šurlan

“We now have 25 cows, several bulls, calves, and we are leaving female calves for breeding. We produce about 11 thousand liters of milk per month and sell it to the buyer, the company ‘Mlijekoprodukt’. We grow corn, oats, wheat, we make silage for our own needs. “, says Dragana Kosić.

She started farming in the second half of the 1990s when she left her job as a trader, and the company her husband worked for failed in the privatization process. They had bulls first, but they started working more seriously in 2013, when Dragana Kosić registered an agricultural farm.

“We have our dinar, we meet basic needs, we don’t see if anyone will give us anything. We are settling my obligations, I am registered and I am paying for my length of service and pension contribution, my husband has health insurance. He is not registered as a worker because there are big obligations, we can’t cover everything, we need to buy concentrate, oil, there are a lot of expenses. “, says this farmer.

As the owner of an agricultural farm, Dragana Kosić is last year had an advantage when receiving incentives from the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management of the Government of the Republika Srpska. According to additional criteria prescribed by the Ministry, women in the countryside can get 30 percent return in exercising the right to incentives for capital investments, such as equipment, facilities, machinery, plantations, irrigation, etc., and are favored with an additional 10 points in evaluate applications.

This helped make Dragana Kosić’s farm richer for the tractor, which, as he points out, they needed to cultivate the land faster and more efficiently, but also for other jobs on the farm.

The incentive was realized in the way that the Kosićs bought the tractor they needed and paid 80,000 marks for it, and the Ministry gave them 23,550 KM after the necessary documentation and invoices were submitted to them. Although it was not easy for them to pay the full amount in advance, the return they received is very important because in agriculture “every dinar means”.

“It is a significant help to us, we need a tractor because we only sow corn around 200 dunums, we have attachments and two tractors, which we already had, were not enough for us to get everything because we are wasting time putting on attachments. We have a mixer trailer, silo harvester, plows, harvester, tanker… We can’t work without that. We cultivate about 50 hectares of land, about 25 hectares is our land, and we rent the rest. “, states Dragana Kosić.

Her husband Mitar adds that everything has become more expensive over the years, especially in the last year, and that the price of milk remains the same, and that they also receive an incentive in the form of a milk premium.

“If it weren’t for that, it wouldn’t be profitable to sell milk, it keeps us at zero or minimal earnings, plus one or two pfennigs per liter. We sell calves and bulls alive, there are buyers, but they will not pay VAT, which we pay. “, adds Mitar Kosić.

At least five families from the village live indirectly from this farm, have income or help in cultivating the land, whose members are occasionally hired during the season and whose land they rent, Kosići said, while showing silage, corn, barns and other auxiliary facilities on the farm. .

“If necessary, we ask people to work for a living, when there is silage, we sometimes have a dozen workers, and when there are other jobs, we have three families, who also have farms, so we help each other, when plowing, milling, we do everything together.”, say Kosići.

Last year, Farma Kosić received an incentive from the Ministry for insemination of heifers in the amount of 600 KM, as well as more than 800 KM in the name of regressed fuel. For this year, they will have about 550 KM in subsidies for the purchase of a “sprayer” tank for corn, because the one they had was old, it often broke down, so they decided to buy a new one.

Women have an advantage for capital investment

Of the total number of registered agricultural farms in 2015, women were the owners of farms in 14 percent of cases, while in 2020 that percentage increased to 22.7 percent, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management of Republika Srpska. In 2020, an incentive in the amount of five million marks or six percent of the total incentives was awarded to women holders of agricultural farms.

The Ministry points out that previously there was special support for encouraging women in agriculture and that about five percent more money was given for the purchase of equipment if the woman is the owner or owner of an agricultural farm, and that in the last three years another model was switched.

“It was made special Rulebook on conditions and manner of realization of financial incentives for capital investments in agricultural production, a public call is issued and measures are defined so that women holders of households receive 10 points more when scoring and creating a ranking list compared to farms where the owners are men. As a result, women go to the very top of the rankings and have a higher priority to receive incentives. “, explained Drena Đukić, senior expert associate for cooperatives and consulting in the Ministry.

farm mower

Photo: Part of the Regulations

She added that these measures gave results, and that earlier there were fewer women as holders of agricultural farms, and that today there are about 20 percent of them in relation to the total number of farms.

“We are not yet satisfied with the level, but we are optimistic that this growth trend will continue in the future.”, states Đukić and adds that funds for agricultural incentives are allocated from the Budget of the Republic of Srpska every year.

“In addition to incentives, we also provide funds for business activities of women’s associations and cooperatives. Those incentives averaged 10 thousand last year, and this year around six thousand marks. Within this measure, we also have a benefit for women, because during capital investments, farmers have to buy what they need, and only then receive funds, but with women’s associations we accept to give a budget and receive funds that they then invest. That makes it easier to finance everything. “, said Djukic.

The new measure is that farmers who get a child also receive a one-time assistance from the Ministry of 500 KM per child.

Gender responsive budgeting began in 2010
farm mower

Photo: Capital

The Ministry also points out that the introduction of gender budgeting in the development policy of agriculture and rural areas in RS began with the adoption of the Strategic Plan for Rural Development of RS in 2010, and later the Action Plan for Improving the Position of Rural Women as a unique example at the time. region.

“We are aware of the fact that it is crucial for the survival of villages and rural households that women stay in the villages and engage in agricultural production, and we have supported the entrepreneurship of women in rural areas with strategic measures.”, according to the Ministry.

Since 2010, they have implemented four projects to improve women’s entrepreneurship, supported the establishment and development of business activities for 16 women’s associations, implemented the Cooperative School project, and helped establish and improve business activities for five agricultural cooperatives founded by rural women.

“Through the advisory service, we conducted professional trainings, specially designed and organized for rural women, a total of 65 trainings in the period [od 2010. do sada], which was attended by 1,302 women from rural areas. We have implemented a project on gender responsive budgeting at the regional level and established a support network for rural women at the level of two regions and launched an initiative for a series of gender responsive actions at regional and local level, many of which are related to improving market recognition of rural women., they pointed out in the Ministry.

It is necessary to increase gender responsive budgeting

The President of the Steering Board of the United Women organization, Nada Golubović, says that at the level of BiH, entities and local communities, there are generally no program budgets or the budget plans something, but it is not spent for those purposes.

“Gender-responsive budgets mean how much money is earmarked for the specific needs of women and men. Our budgets are definitely not gender responsive enough and improvements are needed. At the level of RS and local communities, there is support for women entrepreneurs, but much less is given to women than to men. The reason is that the owners of farms are mostly men, and incentives are not given to women if they are not owners, although there are some local communities where incentives are given if a woman rents land, but this is far from having gender-responsive budgets that are fully meet the needs of women “, said Golubović.

He points out that the RS Ministry of Family, Youth and Sports funds safe houses for women victims of violence, but that, for example, allocations for sports are many times higher for men than for women.

Agriculture and cattle breeding are hard work, but the Kosić family points out that they can make a living from it, as well as that their two sons, who live and work with their families in Banja Luka, help them in everything.

We fight and work as much as we can, it is difficult, especially when the work season is in the field, it is increasingly difficult to find workers, but we arrive, help each other with neighbors and friends, earn to meet our needs, obligations to the state and pay loans of which we bought a part of the machines, and the incentives helped us to get through everything easier. “, says Dragana Kosić.

CAPITAL: Svjetlana Šurlan

The story was created as part of the work with the media on reporting on gender responsive budgeting, as part of the project “Financial Support for Changes in Gender Equality to Ensure More Transparent, Inclusive and Responsible Governance in the Western Balkans” implemented by UN Women and supported by the Swedish International Development and Cooperation (SIDA).

Source: – Informacija je capital by

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