Building a dairy supply chain in Ethiopia together with GAIN Nordic


Building new supply chains for affordable food in Ethiopia
Through the GAIN Nordic Partnership, we are playing an active role in projects to build sustainable supply chains for affordable food products in Ethiopia. The primary objective is to give low-income families better access to nutritious and safe food products that can help reduce malnutrition. At the same time, the establishment of local production will enable smallholder farmers to improve their income, create new jobs in the food processing sector and make better use of local raw materials.

A dairy supply chain for nutritious yoghurt
Ethiopia has 11 million cows, but due to a lack of infrastructure, much of their milk never reaches consumers. The aim of the GAIN Access to Better Dairy project is to build a sustainable dairy chain in collaboration with smallholder farmers and local dairies. As lead business partner, our role at Arla Foods Ingredients is to equip the dairies with the capabilities to produce a safe, nutritious and affordable yoghurt for sale in Ethiopian markets and kiosks.

The yoghurt recipe contains our whey permeate – an ingredient rich in milk minerals and lactose – to maximise the dairies’ yoghurt production and ensure a good taste and texture.

Our partners in the project – GAIN and DanChurchAid – are establishing other key links in the supply chain. This involves working with farmers to improve their milk quality and yield and raising public awareness of the importance of good nutrition, especially for children and pregnant or breastfeeding mothers. The Confederation of Danish Industry is contributing to the business model. 

GAIN Nordic launched the project after completing an impact assessment of the Ethiopian dairy sector. The assessment included developing a tool for identifying and avoiding potential negative impacts.

GAIN Access to Better Dairy is supported by Denmark’s development cooperation agency, Danida. The detailed case description is available for download here.

From papaya waste to dried fruit snack
Vitamin-rich papayas are a source of income for more than 890,000 smallholder farmers in Ethiopia, but 30% of their harvest is currently lost due to spoilage. If just some of this nutritious fruit could be saved and brought to market as an affordable dried papaya snack, the benefits would be great – for the farmers, for job creation in the food industry and for low-income households where malnutrition is common.

We are participating in a public-private partnership that aims to build a supply chain to transform papaya waste into a commercial dried fruit protein bar. As product innovation partner, our role is to develop the recipes and transfer the necessary processing knowhow to local manufacturers.

Led by GAIN, the partnership includes Addis Ababa University, three Ethiopian food producers and a local agricultural engineering enterprise. The Confederation of Danish Industry is responsible for developing a viable business model.

The Danida Market Development Partnerships programme is funding the project.