May 7, 2021

The traditional method of sun-drying chilies in the open, typically on rooftops, is a standard practice in many parts of Bhutan. However, due to extreme weather conditions like heavy rain and humidity, districts like Trashi Yangtse face difficulties when it comes to drying their chilies effectively. On top of wet weather getting in the way, techniques to hasten the drying effect on larger stores of crops are also increasingly associated with a reduction in the quality and quantity of chilies. To mitigate these issues, Namgay, the Deputy Chief Executive Officer of Bhutan Association of Women Entrepreneurs (BAOWE), believes having a shared community dehydrator will allow farmers to reduce post-harvest losses and add more value to their production.

The Bhutan Foundation USAID-US Agency for International Development ESF project works with BAOWE to address access to good farming and post-harvest technology and access to the market. The overall goal of this project is to enhance local agriculture production, reduce post-harvest losses and ultimately keep farmers, particularly women, employed and out of poverty during the pandemic and beyond. This project will help women entrepreneurs enhance local agriculture production by providing farming machinery and equipment such as mustard oil expellers, deep freezers, turmeric grinders, and dehydrates in four districts.

Who is BAOWE?

We are happy to partner with BAOWE, a Civil Society Organization (CSO) established in 2010. The organization aims to empower women and girls (single mothers, unemployed youth, and women working in the informal sector) through entrepreneurship programs. BAOWE has over 4000 members spread across 13 Dzongkhags in Self-Help Groups (SHGs) and Cooperatives registered under the Ministry of Agriculture.