Firstly, at least 250 families are given the opportunity to take up berry production or honey production, and secondly, the project will continue to focus on its work with the producer organisations. The objective is to help develop the organisations to the extent that, when the support comes to an end, they can act independently. Furthermore, the current project also pursues the aim of intensifying cooperation between the local berry organisations and establishing a general regional berry producer organisation; the aim is to set the course at an early stage for a national umbrella organisation for berry producers (based on the model of the umbrella organisation in Bosnia and Herzegovina).
The better organised production will pave the way for the producers in the project region to be able to put their products more competitively on the market, so that they generate a higher income. Above all, it is important that the producers can rely on well-organised advice and have access to investment opportunities. For this reason, another important partner (in addition to the four producer organisation) will be the still to be selected microcredit organisation. New and existing producers will be able to access fair loans, allowing them to set up and expand their production. This, coupled with high-quality advice, reduces the risk of losses which the producers could otherwise incur. The goal for the small-scale producers is to build a secure and regular source of income.
The project will implement the regional expansion of seedlings and enable the provision of production inputs for the producers. In addition, the establishment of standards for the production of berries (integrated production IP) and honey (organic) will be another cornerstone of the project. These standards will further strengthen the producers’ market presence on the domestic market and open up new opportunities for them on the international market.
The programme benefits from the experiences of the very similar and very successful Caritas agricultural programme in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH). The experiences and lessons learned by Caritas in BiH will be adapted for the Kosovo context, whereby local peculiarities are taken into account. However, in general, both contexts are very similar from a climate and economic perspective, which helps to get the priorities right from the start. Both programmes (BiH and Kosovo) are advised by the same experts. The success of BiH is to be replicated in Kosovo. The agricultural projects of Caritas Switzerland in BiH and Kosovo are of regional importance (Western Balkans Regional Strategy). The exploitation of these synergies creates security and stability for the continued development of the programme in Kosovo.