As the saying goes, “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”
Well this doesn’t just apply to fish: Asian Agri has been working with local communities to help them farm egg-producing ducks.
The initiative comes as part of our community development program, and aims to encourage economic empowerment of local communities in Jambi and North Sumatra.
Duck eggs not only fetch a higher price than hen’s eggs, they’re also easy to produce, making this an ideal business for communities more used to growing crops than rearing animals.
Instead of just donating food to needy communities, Asian Agri is aiming to make them self-sufficient by boosting their income.
A total of 225 ducks were distributed in Tuo Sumay Village, Teriti Village and Tanjung Dani Hamlet, Sumay District, Tebo Regency, Jambi, and another 225 were distributed in Batu Anam Village, Sidomulyo Village and Gonting Malaha Village, Asahan Regency, North Sumatra.
“Initially there was resistance because they were used to receiving donations in the form of food. However, after we gave an understanding that having a long-term source of income is much more important and sustainable, they were convinced and willing to try,” said company representative, Frans Nadeak.
The ducks Asian Agri provides are around five months old, so they can start laying eggs within a few days. We also provide subsidized food so that the ducks are healthy and produce delicious eggs.
The communities are given training on how to care for the animals, as well as on how to market the eggs and even process them into higher value commodities, such as salted eggs.
The program requires the community to work together, which helps foster cooperation while also growing the local economy.
"The laying ducks faming will be managed by the local Karang Taruna (youth organization), under the supervision of the Village Consultative Body (and the local Village Unit Cooperative as per our agreement with all parties," explained one of the Garden Managers, Qaddafi Panjaitan.
This cooperative adopts a profit-sharing system from the sale of ducks eggs, with half the proceeds benefitting the local Karang Taruna.
The synergy within local communities is the key to a successful community economic empowerment program, because it will help them to develop their entrepreneurial network.