“The Pillar of My Home” charts ACDI/VOCA’s role in developing Ethiopia’s specialty coffee market, linking small rural cooperatives to the global market through capacity building, increased access to capital and value chain development. The success in coffee is set in the context of ACDI/VOCA’s comprehensive cooperative development over multiple projects covering many years.
Zerihun Alemayehu, former head of the cooperative promotion bureau in the Ethiopian prime minister's office, says in the article, “The bureau, supported by ACDI/VOCA with USAID funding, is revolutionizing the cooperative movement in Ethiopia. Cooperatives under the previous command economy regime were characterized by mismanagement, corruption and embezzlement. Farmers were exploited and marginalized from their efforts. The new model cooperatives currently being promoted by the government and ACDI/VOCA are democratic, business-oriented and professionally managed with increased income to member farmers as the primary objective."
In this, the International Year of the Cooperative, read more about the purchase, marketing and political power of farmers coming together here: USDA Rural Cooperatives Magazine (PDF). Article begins on page 40.
Learn more about how speciality coffee can be transformative for smallholder farmers.
Learn more about the Agricultural Cooperatives in Ethiopia program.
Learn more about our current and past work in Ethiopia.
Pictured at top left: Coffee washing and drying stations in Ethiopia.
Feature Published: 10/12