Food Chama: Hard economic times has called for Kenyans to look for innovative ways in which they can cut back on their spending. This includes coming together to form merry-go-rounds locally known as chamas; be it for money or for other purposes. There has been a recent increase in food chamas, which involve a number of people coming together, contributing a fixed amount of money and then buying food in wholesale. After the purchase, each person is given an equal share of the items. The beauty of food chamas is that food is bought at wholesale prices, making it an economical option.

How to Start a Food Chama in Kenya
How to Start a Food Chama in Kenya/Photo

Tips to having a successful food chama

 

  • Find people who are interested in forming the chama with you. It is advisable that you choose people who live in the same area as you, as it would make for easier coordinating.
  • Choose people who are committed to sticking to the chama. You don’t want to involve yourself with people who give their word, only for them to change their mind later. Team work and coordination are very important.
  • Be prepared to sacrifice on brand loyalty. Remember, you are a group of people with different tastes. For example, some members may prefer Colgate over Aquafresh. But for a food chama to be successful, you should all be willing to sacrifice your preferred brands.
  • Agree on the amount that you will contribute before shopping for the items. This makes it easier to budget once you have a fixed amount that you’re working with.
  • Pick a day where all the members are available to shop. Aim to have at least 90% attendance. This is mainly for accountability’s sake.

Sample breakdown of what you can buy with 1000 in a group of 10 people

  • Kakira sugar 21kgs 2100
  • Pembe ugali bale 1470
  • Hanaan toilet 40 pieces 1150
  • Rice 25kgs 3100
  • Blueband 1kg 4 pieces 1080

This is shopping that could last you between 3 to 4 months. Where else in Kenya would you be able to do 3 months’ worth of shopping on a 1000 shilling budget?

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