Regional annual meetings held

“What we have not done is still greater than what we have done thus far. We need to further work together to bring change in the sesame sector.” Fiseha Bezabih, Deputy Director of Tigray Agriculture Bureau.

“There is still a lot in the plate for 2019. There is a potential for high performance of the sector.” Ted Schrader- Benefit-SBN project Coordinator

Two annual regional SBN stakeholders meetings were conducted on the 19th and 22nd of December 2018 at Shire and Bahir Dar, respectively. About 55 in Shire and 52 at Bahir Dar participants convened from different organisations in the SBN and support projects attended the workshop.

The meetings were held with the objective of reviewing the results of 2018 activities, which have been done by major stakeholders of the SBN and Benefit-SBN; and discussing on the major strategic challenges of the sesame sector.

Both meetings were successful in achieving the already set objectives. Participants discussed on results of the various activities conducted in 2018 including scaling out of the improved production technologies (agricultural mechanization, weather forecast)  financial literacy roll out, guarantee fund programme, kebele level agro-economic plan etc.

Participants of the meeting discussed on 10 major strategic challenges of the sesame sector and suggested possible solutions to meet these demanding challenges. The challenges are: input credit for production improvement; farmers low literacy and poor saving culture; limited finance/credit for cooperatives marketing; cooperative business organisation; investor farmers limited or poor performance; machinery and mechanization; value chain development; social inclusion (labour, nutrition and gender); information and communication; and regional and national platform.