Hashoo Foundation with the Sponsorship of USAID successfully completes a Dairy Value Chain Initiative
June 09, 2014
Improving Micro Enterprises in Dairy, the Dairy Value Chain Initiative of The U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Entrepreneurs Project has been successfully completed by Hashoo Foundation (HF).A project close-out ceremony was arranged by the Foundation on Saturday in Bahawalpur to celebrate its many successes and in particular the public-private partnershipit was able to establish between HF and Shakarganj Food Product Limited. Dairy farmers from Southern Punjab, representatives from Pakistan’s livestock sector, and local NGOs joined project beneficiaries at the ceremony.
The main objective of the initiative was to increase the incomes of micro-entrepreneurs involved in milk production and marketing, the majority of who are women, by 50%. The Project has enhanced the capacities of over 8,000 dairy farmers including Female Livestock Extension Workers (FLEWs) and Female Village Milk Collectors (FVMCs) through extensive capacity building and the integration of effective markets.
Pakistan is the fifth largest milk producing country in the world with 35.6 billion liters (natural contents) of milk per year as published in a report of International Farm Comparison Network (IFCN). It is also estimated that 2.5 billion liters of milk are wasted in Pakistan each year. Through this initiative, Hashoo Foundation with the sponsorship of USAID has provided Pakistan’s rural dairy farmers, especially female dairy farmers, increased tools and the knowledge to improve their production, generating greater economic opportunities for themselves as well as for Pakistan’s entire dairy industry.The Project has also given special emphasis to the empowerment of women, who contribute greatly to economic growth efforts.
Ali Akbar, Country Director, Hashoo Foundation, stated that it was a proud day for the Foundation because the project, through the untiring efforts of its staff had successfully facilitated improved livelihoods and greater economic security within the community of Bahawalpur. He appreciated and lauded the work of the female livestock extension workers who as budding new entrepreneurs were now providing badly needed services at the doorsteps of female dairy farmers. He concluded by thanking USAID and MEDA for their continued support and guidance during the course of the project.
Speaking at the event Dr. Daniel Lee, Acting Chief of Party, USAID’s Entrepreneurs Project said, “ The USAID’s Entrepreneurs Project has not only inculcated entrepreneurship in the dairy sector, but also worked to increase milk production due to the adoption of best farm practices, promoted small enterprises in the form of input supply hubs, developed commercial milk marketing channels in the shape of installment of milk chillers and instilled sustainability of the project through the improving the economic conditions of project beneficiaries.” He also thanked Hashoo Foundation for thesuccessful completion of the project and highlighted the support provided by the private sector including Shakarganj Food Products Limited.
The Dairy Value Chain of USAID’s Entrepreneurs Project was being implemented through local partners withHashoo Foundation implementingit in District Bahawalpur of Southern Punjab.
Hashoo Foundation is a progressive and dynamic non-profit organization, leading the way in human development and poverty alleviation by implementing viable economic development, educational and capacity-building programs in Pakistan since 1988.
Bahawalpur: Hashoo Foundation & MEDA-USAID Pakistan Officials with the project beneficiaries at the project closing ceremony