USAID, Engro join hands to improve Cold Chain for Dairy

Karachi: United States Agency for International Development USAID through Mennonite Economic Development Associates MEDA and its local implementing partner Engro Foundation will improve dairy cold chain by providing 60 chillers to dairy farmers in rural areas of Sindh & Punjab provinces under Women Empowerment through Livestock Development WELD project.

In event Thursday in Karachi, COO MEDA, Ms Kim Pityn, Vice President Public Affairs & Human Resources, Tahir Jawaid of Engro Corporation & Trustee Engro Foundation & Vice President Engro Foods Supply Chain, Shamsuddin Shaikh signed contract whereby Engro Foods committed to put in $670,000 as its contribution for installation, operation of 60 chillers in districts of northern Sindh & southern Punjab – Larkana, Shikarpur, Dadu, Khairpur, Naushehro Feroze, Ghotki, Muzaffargarh & Layyah. MEDA’s Director for Women’s Economic Development, Helen Loftin also attended.

“Engro has been working to alleviate livelihood. This partnership with USAID enabled us to do lot more for the community and especially for women empowerment. We look forward to bringing forth a better future for these rural communities,” said Tahir Jawaid, VP Public Affairs & HR and Trustee of Engro Foundation.

“It’s our pleasure to see this initiative taking off strongly, which ultimately will create impact in bringing about positive economic change in the region, especially for women dairy farmers, micro-entrepreneurs.” Kim Pityn said.

As stipulated in contract, Engro Foundation & Engro Foods both agree to share cost of milk chillers who will help dairy farmers from remote areas to earn more income by ensuring proper storage of their milk. Presently, milk collected and stored at homes deteriorates quickly, especially during summer. It is estimated 20% of total milk collected is wasted. Storing milk in chillers will ensure preservation of quality, minimize losses, ultimately resulting in higher returns to farmers.

Engro Foods & Engro Foundation also agreed to invest in costs of equipment for Female Livestock Extension Workers FLEW & Female Village Milk Collectors FVMC. At end of project on December 31, 2013, Engro Foundation will hand over these equipments to FLEWs & FVMCs who will become rightful owners.

In June MEDA, through USAID-funded Entrepreneurs project, signed sub-grant agreement with Engro Foundation to implement Women Empowerment through Livestock Development WELD project to develop dairy sector by linking up milk producers to some of leading milk processors, buyers in the country. Additionally, trainings on better livestock management, improved nutrition, water provision, proper milking practice, adequate animal health care will also be provided to dairy farmers, mostly women. This initiative is anticipated to increase incomes of at least 15,000 dairy farmers, predominantly women, by at least 50% in next two and a half years.

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