YEREVAN — Children of Armenia Fund (COAF) signed a four-year Memorandum of Understanding with the Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) on September 17 to upgrade dairy production in six communities of the Lori region. By improving the pasture and livestock feed production across the region, this project will enhance the quality of raw milk and establish a demand for high-quality dairy products, ultimately impacting regional price dynamics and increasing the revenue of rural milk producers.

The event was held at the COAF SMART Center and attended by representatives from the Strategic Development Agency (SDA) and World Wide Fund For Nature (WWF), Caritas Armenia, AMCOR, as well as mayors of the beneficiary communities.

In a constant endeavor to improve the livelihoods of rural children, COAF has integrated Economic Development in its multilayered effort to create the right socio-economic environment for collective progress. As part of its Economic Development program, COAF has earlier launched a project in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). This program has resulted in developing a raspberry value chain in the Lori region by providing berry seedlings, establishing a drip irrigation system, and training over 50 households in berry production and cultivation.

Drawing on successes achieved in this project, COAF is eager to replicate this model for Armenia’s underdeveloped dairy value chain. In joining forces with the AMAA, COAF will be able to make a sustainable impact on Lori’s dairy market by optimizing four existing businesses through innovative and renewable technologies in milk processing. Simultaneously, two new dairy production businesses will be established that will benefit from the enhanced reproductive performance of dairy animals. The improved quality of milk will allow the new businesses to improve livestock production, produce high-quality cheese, and compete in local and international markets.

As part of the project’s capacity-building programs, local farmers will be trained for artificial insemination and cultivation of corn, alfalfa, and sainfoin. Per partners’ estimates, more than 70 job opportunities will be created throughout the project.

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