ETHIOPIA – SNV and its partners are seeking to improve local smallholder farmers’ livelihoods in Ethiopia with the launch of a new pilot to trial sustainable energy technology in the dairy and poultry sector.

SNV is a mission-driven global development partner working in more than twenty countries across Africa and Asia.

The Sustainable Energy for Productive Use in Dairy and Poultry Value Chains in Ethiopia Micro-Pilot (SEDP) project will run until the end of 2023.

The SEDP project is supported by the IKEA Foundation, which focuses its grant-making efforts on tackling the two biggest threats to children’s futures: poverty and climate change.

The project, implemented in Oromia and Sidama regions, has also received technical advisory support from the Global SDG7 Hubs, an affiliate of the SELCO Foundation.

The sustainability project will trail three technologies for the dairy and poultry sector, including cream separators, butter churners, and solar-powered houses.

SNV said the tech will address some of the challenges that dairy and poultry smallholder farmers face in building productive livelihoods caused by a lack of efficient means to heat and light their poultry houses and the lack of productivity in processing dairy due to their reliance on intense manual labor.

The firm explained that the technologies can improve production and product quality to increase smallholder farmers’ incomes by 10-50% and create a model to scale up Ethiopia’s Productive Use of Renewable Energy (PURE) technologies.

‘We are pleased to launch this collaboration with Global SDG7 Hubs and the IKEA Foundation. Productive use of renewable energy technology can contribute significantly to increased incomes and improved livelihood conditions. It is a natural expansion of the traditional off-grid solar market,” Julie Graham, Country director of Ethiopia SNV, commented during the pilot launch.

In addition, she noted that incorporating PURE in agriculture value chains supports adaptation to climate change, helping communities be more resilient.

“We look forward to working together to create an initiative that can grow and ultimately deliver the impact that matters in Ethiopia,” Graham underscored.

According to the Central Statistics Agency, livestock production is an important sub-sector within Ethiopia’s economy in terms of its contributions to both agricultural value-added and national GDP.

Ethiopia has the largest livestock population in Africa. Statistics from the agency show that the country had 65 million cattle, 40 million sheep, 51 million goats, 8 million camels, and 49 million chickens in 2020.

Given its potential to improve its productivity and support the farmers, livelihood, the Ethiopian government recently launched a 10-year livestock development plan with a focus on 10 commodities, including red meat, dairy, and poultry.

Another special program ‘YeLemat Tirufat’, which was also launched to focus on nutritional opulence, also pays special attention to certain livestock commodities like milk, honey, poultry, and fish.

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