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Women Economic Leadership through Honey Value chain Development in Ethiopia Gender and Market Oriented Agriculture (AgriGender 2011) Workshop Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 31st January-2nd February 2011 By Gizachew Sisay, Sr. Value Chain Advisor Oxfam GB, CASH-E Program

Women economic leadership through honey value chain development in Ethiopia

Dec 20, 2014




Presented by Gizachew Sisay at Gender and Market Oriented Agriculture (AgriGender 2011) Workshop, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 31st January–2nd February 2011
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  • 1. Women Economic Leadership through Honey Value chain Development in EthiopiaGender and Market Oriented Agriculture (AgriGender 2011) Workshop Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 31st January-2nd February 2011 By Gizachew Sisay, Sr. Value Chain Advisor Oxfam GB, CASH-E Program

2. Commercialization of Agriculture for Small Holders in Ethiopia (CASH-E) overview

  • Initiated in 2006 as Agriculture Scale-Up Programme with the ambition to reach 1 million smallholders
  • Three commodities (Honey, coffee & sesame)
  • 34 districts in three regions (Amhara, Benshangul Gumuz & Oromia) of Ethiopia
  • The programme has so far reached more than 250,000 people
  • Working with 10 partners
    • Four NGO partners, One private sector, Two business service providers, Three unions
  • Transforming gender relationships in the agriculture sector in order to ensure equitable access to institutions, resources and decision-makingis one of the 4 core objectives of the program

3. Overview of Gender in Oxfam

  • Ensuring gender equality is non-negotiable in Oxfam
  • Oxfam put women at the heart ( ) of its development work
  • Recently Oxfam adopted Gendered value chain approach
  • The CASH-E program too adopted the WEL approach to transform gender relations with focus of taking women beyond numbers and mere participation

4. PROCESS steps followed in program design

  • Gender has been used as criteria in selection of the commodity during value chain analysis
  • Oxfam played gender oriented facilitation role
  • Identification of current practice, constraints, opportunities and design intended practice
  • Interventions are designed to address constraints and unleash potentials at each level of the chain
    • Organizing women beekeepers into SHGs to access training, credit, inputs and market
    • Capacity building of women BKs (training & supply of improved beehives and accessories)
    • Linkage between producers and private sector
  • Sensitization of VC actors for increasing womens participation

5. Commodity selection by using decision matrix 6. 7. 8. 9. Constraining factors for womens full engagement in beekeeping

  • Traditionally women have not been seen as beekeepers, forming only 1% of cooperative members.
  • Some of the limitations for women are
    • Hives kept on trees where women do not climb
    • Bees are stingy men justify why they do BK
    • Lack skill & know-how & technology & market
  • The setting of traditional hive is not convenient for women to engage (95% of hives are traditional)
  • Participation of women reduces as moving up in the VC

10. Comparative advantages of beekeeping for rural women smallholders

  • It doesnt need farmland which most women dont have it or cant afford it. keeping 4 modern hives, needs less than 100m2 land, but the income (minimum of 350 USD per annum) is equal to growing crop in half a hectare of land.
  • It doesnt need much labour, and doesn't create additional burden (particularly for female-headed HHs)
  • Beekeeping doesnt need most of the expensive agricultural inputs (seeds, fertilizer, oxen to plough the land), which again are difficult for women to easily access.
  • Beekeeping is relatively less vulnerable to disaster shocks as compared to crop
  • Is a seasonal activity & inspection be done in spare time.

11. The logic model to promote gendered honey value chain (Beekeeping)

  • Why:Strong potential for poverty reduction ( income & employment generation) mainly women & landless youth)
  • BK can be done in spare time & at homestead where women can manage/engage
  • BK doesnt need land, labour and investment on inputs as compared to other agriculture activities
  • Product has high market demand (national & international)
  • How:Improved technology allows women to participate in production, quality improvement as well as marketing.
  • Local (village) level capacity building & integration of FAL
  • Organization of women producers into SHGs
  • What:Productivity & quality can be improved easily @ scale
  • Unleash the comparative advantages of BK for women farmers benefit

12. 13. 14. 15. 16. Achievements & impact

  • Village level training & demo centre allowed more women beekeepers to access new skills/knowledge
  • Coops have amended their bylaws to allow more than one person in a HH, women have started taking leadership membership positions
  • More than 440 women beekeepers organized into SHGs and joined coops
  • Productivity of honey increased from 5-10 to 20-30kg per hive per year, quality improved and producers incomes is rising up to 200%.
  • Womens participation in coops increased from 1% to 17%, and up to 45% in some cases where Oxfam intervened
  • Challenging the existing attitudes and stereotypes about women
  • Change of roles (women have started to engage in harvesting and marketing of honey)

17. Participation of women in coops with various interventions 18. Gender roles are started changing 19. 20. 21. Lessons learnt and recommendations

  • Identification of the right commodity, right intervention and right approach (model of change) that fits to the situation and condition of women
  • Participation of women in the chains upper function is still low demanding more dynamic interventions such as integrating functional adult literacy.
  • The need to organize women beekeepers into product diversification such as speciality honey by Women BKs
  • Women alone vs mixed cooperatives in addressing womens specific needs, interest, benefit and control needs study
  • To help women, it is necessary to choose a value chain that has market potential and technology that also works for women.

22. Thank you!