Background to the Weekly Markets (LUMOs) in The Gambia
Rural Gambian communities have historically faced challenges with marketing agricultural
produce and buying commodities for retail at community level as well as for daily
consumption. In the past, they had to travel long distances for such business transactions
which was costly both in terms of time and money. For hard-to-reach communities, travel
difficulties encountered contributed to post harvest losses for perishable agricultural produce
which consequently led to loss of income for many farmers. Unable to travel to their regional
growth centers or the Greater Banjul Area (GBA), farmers often sold their produce to middle
men who canvased the rural areas to buy agricultural produce at low prices; this affects
women particularly, because they have less freedom of movement due both to domestic and
care responsibilities and gender traditional norms and practices. As a recent FAO report
states 1 , compared to men farmers and traders, women have less access to education,

agricultural information and extension services, technology, and financial services. Their
access to market, storage and processing technology remains poor and hampers value chain
development.

About the

Lumos

weekly markets called Lumo in many rural
communities in both The Gambia and neighboring Senegal. Currently 38 ‘Lumos’ exist in
The Gambia spread over the 5 mainly rural Local Government Areas (LGAs). These weekly
markets are held on scheduled days of the week and alternated among villages and towns to
minimize clashes in market days for settlements in close proximity.