A poorly organized and neglected agricultural sector

Since the end of the Soviet period, Georgian agriculture has struggled to develop and has not achieved food self-sufficiency. In the Samtskhe-Javakheti region, family farms produce food crops such as potatoes, milk and honey. However, income from these crops is low and yields are not very productive. The lack of access to the knowledge and inputs required for the production, storage, processing and marketing of agricultural products is a major obstacle.

Fert has been working in Georgia since 2011, supporting the GBDC-AO technical team and the Ertoba farmers’ organization. Together, they initiated a dairy extension service and proved that it is possible for farmers to organize themselves. Today, Fert and its partners are entering a new phase to provide services to a larger number of producers and to promote the viability of these partner organizations.


To improve the standard of living of the farms in the region through local services that are managed by and for the farmers.


Increase production through efficient and environmentally friendly agricultural practices

Add value to products through post-harvest operations and marketing of healthy and high-quality products

Organize into a farmers’ collective to manage services and dialogue with partners.


Local advisory services to meet farmers’ needs

The farmers of Samtskhe-Javakheti organize themselves through the Ertoba Association. The board of the association meets every month to plan and monitor the activities to be carried out in response to the needs of its members:

  • Operational diagnostics and technical-economic advice on various topics: animal health and reproduction, fodder production and food, infrastructure, storage, quality and milk processing…
  • Group animation: experiments, training, exchange visits
  • Group purchases of inputs, joint investments and access to finance
  • Support for professional structuring: training of leaders, monitoring and relations with local authorities.

These activities are carried out by the 9 GBDC technicians placed at the disposal of Ertoba. Based in Akhaltsikhe, they operate within a 50 km radius to ensure a close relationship with the farmers.

Capital city, Tbilissi
Region of Samtskhe-Javakheti


farmers benefiting from GBDC technical services, including 135 farmers who are members of Ertoba


types of production supported: milk, beekeeping, potatoes

Focus on milk

About 10 dairy cows per farm
Dairy margin of 1728 Georgian Lari / year / cow
70% of milk production processed into cheese on the farm

220 000

Average annuel budget
(including Fert’s accompaniment)