About the Project
Rearing goats and sheep has long been a way of life in Ethiopia, where more than 20 percent of the population live below the poverty line (2019). Historically, livestock and agribusiness make a significant economic impact in the country, accounting for roughly 80 percent of employment and 40 percent of GDP. Millions of Ethiopian smallholders raise animals to consume or to sell, but the market is fragmented, limiting their incomes. Many farmers apply inefficient husbandry practices, meaning their herds fall short of demanding international standards.
IFC, with support from the Private Sector Window of GAFSP, is working closely with Luna Export Slaughterhouse on a four-year program to train farmers on improved forage development, financial literacy, water management, and animal health and welfare standards for domestic—and export—markets. The project has also established a demonstration farm to support the farmers’ training and has a special focus on women farmers, analyzing their roles in Luna’s supply chain, and itemizing the resources they can – and can’t – access. The goal is to help women boost their productivity and profits, and to encourage female farmers to take a more active role in the sector.
IFC is also directly supporting Luna itself, advising the company on upgrades to its sprawling processing site south of Addis Ababa, and helping it implement rigorous traceability, hygiene, marketing, and distribution strategies. This support has helped Luna become Ethiopia’s first meat processor to achieve the globally-recognized FSSC 22000 production certification, a testament to the company’s robust and effective food safety management system. With IFC’s support, Luna’s ambition is to produce premium cuts of goat, sheep, and beef to equal anything currently available in its target markets, and to make Ethiopian meat as known, loved, and trusted as another already famous Ethiopian product—coffee.
An estimated 1,200 farmers of a target of at least 5,000, including 1,500 women, have been reached since the program was launched in 2019. The training is helping farmers increase feed production for their livestock, improve their crop residue management, and professionalize the way they run their farms and businesses. The goal is to help them raise consistently healthy, high-quality animals.