Fonterra partners with NADeP to empower rural smallholder dairy farmer families

Saturday, 17 December 2016 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Fonterra Brands Sri Lanka, the company behind Anchor, has partnered with the National Agribusiness Development Program (NADeP) to help Sri Lankan smallholder dairy farmer families to improve farm productivity and profitability through a Rs. 28.5 million project.untitled-1

NADeP is implemented by the Development and Special Projects Division under the Presidential Secretariat of Sri Lanka and funded by the International Fund for Agricultural Development. It aims to contribute to poverty eradication and promote sustainable livelihoods for rural Sri Lankan farmers. 

NADeP Director Dr. Yasantha Mapatuna said, “At NADeP, we realised that the most effective method in achieving our purpose of helping Sri Lankan smallholder farmers become profitable and self-reliant, would be to partner with the companies that purchase their produce.” 

“Our unique approach involves connecting the industry expertise and competencies of companies such as Fonterra with the dairy farmers at a grass roots level, helping them to improve on farm productivity, resulting in better income and livelihood,” she further added.           

As part of the project’s first stage, 200 farmer families in Doluwa, Wilaththawa and Gampaha will receive a 50% grant to invest in grass choppers and milking machines which are critical to building economically sustainable dairy farming families. 

An impact assessment revealed that the grants could help achieve an increase in milk volumes per farm and subsequent enhanced farmer profitability. 

Fonterra Brands Sri Lanka Managing Director Sunil Sethi said that Fonterra is excited to partner with the National Agribusiness Development Program. “Through this partnership we will be able to provide our farmer suppliers with the tools they need to reach their maximum potential and encourage them to employ a more entrepreneurial mind-set, which is key to individual and industry development.

“These partnerships with key industry groups are part of Fonterra’s nationally acclaimed, pioneering dairy development programme which is focused on developing a thriving dairy industry.”

“It’s all part of our purpose to build a healthier and happier Sri Lanka,” said Sethi.

Fonterra’s Supplier Relationship Officers (SROs) have already played a key role in the program by identifying farmer requirements and selecting the farmers that will receive the grant. Through their extensive industry expertise, Fonterra’s SROs will monitor, guide and support the farmers for the two year project period, and report on the improvements achieved.