Reducing Food Losses through Improved Post Harvest Management in Ethiopia

Ethiopia continues to experience high post-harvest losses around 30% annually due to inappropriate use of technologies and mal-practices. Building up on the success stories and knowledge gained from SDC’s long-term engagement in post-harvest management and lessons learnt from the first phase, the second phase aims at promoting affordable and effective on-farm storage technologies and management practices to reduce post-harvest losses for smallholder farmers in Ethiopia.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Agriculture & food security
Plant protection & pest control
Agricultural services & market
Agricultural policy
01.07.2018 - 31.08.2024
CHF  2’900’000
Background The substantial focus on production of grain crops in Ethiopia has tended to overlook the importance of post-harvest management (PHM) leading to high level of losses at each stage of the post-harvest operations. Despite investing in agricultural production, many households end up food insecure and poverty-stricken due to inappropriate PHM practices accounting for up to 30% losses. Thus, realization of food security in Ethiopia necessitates improvement in agricultural production not only in productivity but also addressing challenges associated with PH handling practices.

Improved food and nutrition security and income of smallholder farmers in Ethiopia through reduction of post-harvest losses by promotion of technologies, complementary policies and institutional innovations.


Target groups Direct beneficiaries of this project will be smallholder men and women farmers. Artisans and unemployed youth will benefit through training and marketing of metal silos. The private sector is targeted through an enhanced market development approach. The Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Resources, the Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research, Regional Bureaus of Agriculture, Regional Agricultural Research Institutes, Higher Learning Agricultural Institutions, Non-governmental Organizations, Community-based organizations, and Micro-finance Institutes are involved and benefit from the project implementation.
Medium-term outcomes

Outcome 1: Reduced post-harvest losses among smallholder farmers, farmers groups and cooperatives by using improved post-harvest technologies and management practices

Outcome 2: Sustainable financial services and market  linkage options established for smallholder farmers and private sector to promote post-harvest management technologies

Outcome 3: Appropriate regulatory frameworks and institutional structures supported to implement the National Post-harvest Management Strategy


Results from previous phases:  

More than 5’000 farmers benefited from improved post-harvest handling technologies while around 5’600 farmers benefited from the knowledge and information disseminated.

Post-harvest losses were reduced by 30 - 40% in a given cropping season in the four value chains considered (maize, wheat, sorghum and haricot bean).

Institutional capacities of the national agricultural extension system, regional regulatory bodies, and research and education institutions were enhanced around post-harvest technologies at all levels.

The National PHM Strategy launched.

Post-harvest extension manuals, public private partnership working modalities and systems for quality assurance of metal silos developed and promoted.

The biology and ecology of storage insect pests and indigenous knowledge and best practices of PHM were documented.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Development cooperation
Project partners Contract partner
United Nations Organization (UNO)
  • Food and Agricultural Organisation

Implementing partner
a) FAO/IFAD/WFP: Mainstreaming Food Loss Reduction Initiatives for Smallholders in Food Deficit Areas (with pilot activities in Uganda, Burkina Faso, DRC);
b) HELVETAS/FANPRAN/AFAAS: Post-harvest Management in Sub-Saharan (implemented in Benin and Mozambique);
c) SDC financed PHM project in Tanzania;  and d) SDC’s A+FS network & sub-group on PHM.
Other actors include the Ministry for Agriculture and Livestock Research; the Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research; Regional Bureaus of Agriculture; Regional Agricultural Research Institutes; and Higher Learning Institutions, Ethiopian Agricultural Transformation Agency

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    2’900’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    2’800’000
Project phases Phase 2 01.07.2018 - 31.08.2024   (Current phase) Phase 1 01.09.2012 - 31.05.2018   (Completed)