Role of Female and Male Headed Households in Dairy Production, Processing and Marketing in Walmera District of Central High Lands of Ethiopia

Alganesh Tola


A formal survey was conducted in Rob Gebeya women dairy producers of Walmera districts of West Shewa in central highlands of Ethiopia. The objective of the study was to identify constraints of female headed households (FHH) in comparison with male headed households (MHH) in dairy production, handling, processing and marketing. A total of 66 dairy producer households were randomly selected from a women dairy producer association in Rob Gebeya ‘kebele’ of Walmera district. The average family size (Mean ± SE) in the FHHs in Rob Gebeya was 4.8 ± 0.7 persons per household  whereas the MHHs was 6.0 ± 0.3 persons. FHHs had less access to education than MHHs in Rob Gebeya. Dairy and food crop based farming enterprises were identified as major sources of livelihood. Record keeping is not common in more than half of the respondents both in female and male headed households. The situation is more aggravated in FHH where more than 80% of the FHHs do not keep any type of farm record. In 57% of MHH, husbandry and management of dairy animals was undertaken mainly by MHHs. In 50 % of the households, milking was the responsibility of women. About 66.7% MHHs and 63.6% FHH sell milk. The major marketing segment for raw whole milk is neighbors. About 60.4% of male and 55.6% FHH sold their milk directly to their neighbors. In 64.9% of MHH, women exclusively control income from milk sells. While, 21.6 % of the husbands controlled the income from sell of milk. The major production constraints in the study area were poor quality of feed (27.5%) and feed shortage (29.4%) in MHH. Only 36.4% of FHH had access to training on dairy production and farm management aspects. While, 74.5 % of MHH had access to training. The major constraints can be alleviated by enhancing utilization of available feed resources, improved health, reproductive management, targeted trainings and improved dairy technology.

Keywords: dairy, household groups, production, processing, marketing


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ISSN (Paper)2224-3208 ISSN (Online)2225-093X

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