Fruits on the vine

Improving Smallholder Farmer Livelihoods in Majang

TechnoServe is working to improve the livelihoods of smallholder coffee, honey, and spice farmers in Ethiopia's Majang Zone while enhancing forest conservation.

By building cooperative capacity, engaging with local governments, strengthening access to markets, and improving agronomic practices, TechnoServe is facilitating a stronger, more sustainable forest-based market system that is also focused on women’s empowerment, from leading gender training for cooperatives to creating new business opportunities for local women.

The successful results of the first phase of this program prompted TechnoServe’s implementation of its second phase, with funding from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA). In its first phase, TechnoServe established the first cooperative union in the Majang Zone and increased smallholder farmers’ access to finance. Cooperative leaders were trained in sound governance, bookeeping, financial management, business plan development, and gender policy development. TechnoServe reached approximately 4,000 individuals in the Majang Zone and increased the number of members in cooperatives from 117 to 1,027, while increasing female membership by 53%.

In the program’s second phase, TechnoServe is establishing links between coffee, honey, and spice cooperatives and buyers, financiers, and other key supporting functions to facilitate stronger, more sustainable markets for non-timber forest products, helping to protect against deforestation in the region.

Read about the value of women’s time in Ethiopia’s forests.