This third IFAD project in Bosnia-Herzegovina marks a transition from immediate relief and rehabilitation to long-term sustainable development. The overall objective of the project is to develop a replicable model of small-scale commercial livestock production that will demonstrate the income-earning potential of the livestock sector and contribute to the revival of rural areas. The project targets small-scale farmers as well as landless people returning to rural areas after the war. It helps them develop small commercial farms with about five to ten cows. Access to credit allows them to purchase heifers and milking equipment, refurbish barns and increase feed and fodder production. At present most milk production comes from small-scale producers with one to five cows, and only a small portion of that milk is processed by about 50 small-medium dairy processors. The project sets out to improve rural infrastructure in general, especially linkages between producer and market.

At village level the project encourages the formation of producers’ associations, helps provide agricultural machinery and technical support services, and sets up contracts with dairies for the purchase of collected milk. It also supports improvements to the small dairy industry to prepare it to improve reception and processing of milk.

By mid-2005 the project had helped establish six new producers’ associations and reorganize three existing associations with a total of 1,064 members, more than half of whom are women. It continues to develop business linkages with dairy processors and output markets. By mid-2005 1,280 farmers had taken part in the livestock extension training programme.