Ethiopia, Community Revenue Enhancement through Agricultural Technology Extension (CREATE)

Country: Ethiopia
Project details
Access to finance
Capacity building
Climate-smart agriculture
Enterprise development
Value chain development
Households reached:

Community Revenue Enhancement Through Agricultural Technology Extension (CREATE), 2013-2020


Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, HEINEKEN International, International Finance Corporation (IFC)


HEINEKEN, ICCO, Agricultural Transformation Agency, Oromia Seed Enterprise, Ethiopia Institute of Agricultural Research, Busa Gonofa, Wasasa, Harbu and Metememen Micro Finance Institutions, Oromia Bureau of Agriculture, Cooperative Promotion Agency, Oromia Bureau of Finance and Economic Development, Integrated Seed Sector Development, Federal Charities and Societies Agency


To reduce poverty in Ethiopia, Rwanda and Sierra Leone through increasing agricultural capacity in rural households and limiting the dependency on imported commodities. We aim to rebuild agricultural production and increase food security by linking smallholder farmers to urban markets, restoring essential social services, and rebuilding local community cohesion and infrastructure.

What we do

EUCORD is partnering with HEINEKEN and its subsidiary HEINEKEN Ethiopia to assist with the implementation of the Community Revenue Enhancement through Agricultural Technology Extension project otherwise known as CREATE. Support by the Ministry is used to (a) integrate groups of smallholder farmers into Heineken’s supply chain, and (b) train these farming families in good agricultural practices. This will not only help substitute imported raw materials by local ones (thereby saving scarce foreign exchange resources) but also help establish local supply chains which will transfer purchasing power from the urban middle class to the rural poor.


A virtual Lessons Learned Workshop was held on October 14, 2020. The workshop was organized in collaboration with Heineken and IFC and attracted an audience of 146 participants. The video registration of the workshop captures well the discussions, the lessons learned and includes footage about the project as well as interviews with farmers and key stakeholders.

The Partnerships Resource Centre of the Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University prepared a paper commissioned by the Netherlands MoFA, entitled: “Realizing systemic change through private sector engagement in development: lessons from two cases”.

Significant results and impacts achieved by CREATE in Ethiopia include among others:

  • Variety testing and registration with the Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research
  • Wide adoption of HEINEKEN varieties Traveler and Grace among an estimated 80% of barley producers
  • Average barley yield among participating farmers in Ethiopia more than doubled from 2.4 to 5.2 tons/ha
  • An increase in the number of farmers directly supported by the project from 1,700 to 40,152 who planted barley on 30,114 hectares
  • An estimated 50,000 farmers were supported indirectly, growing barley on an estimated 40,000 ha
  • 60% of barley going to the food market and 40% to industries, hence significantly improving food security of the country
  • Assela Malt Factory stopping the importation of barley from 2016 onward, which used to be about 60% at the start of the project
  • Investments in new malting plants by Boortmalt and Soufflet increasing the malting capacity by 120,000 tons
  • Model farmers initiated by the project achieving better sales than cooperatives and helped to link smallholder farmers to the market
  • Large volume of credit (over USD 1 million) supplied by micro-finance institutions and Unions for seed and crop protection products