Livelihoods Projects in Darfur: Towards Improving the Leather Industry in Darfur

Dec 2, 2013


Some of Darfur’s poorest hides and skins producers are getting a chance to benefit from the growing regional demand of leather products with UNDP’s pilot project ‘Darfur Livelihoods Value Chain Project’ working to improve production techniques for leather production in Sudan.

The tannery and leather production has been referred to as one of the main windows of livelihood opportunities in Darfur. Its advantage lies in its potential of being a valuable source of income for a large sector women and men across Darfur.

In West Darfur alone, where the industry is likely to witness a new business boom, the Hides and Skin Value Chain project helps around 1,000 leather producers.

Cognizant of the need to further develop this  emerging industry in Darfur, UNDP helped organize the first meeting of the Hides and Skin Advisory Group in Nyala on 5 November to discuss holistic approaches for improving this industry.

Participants in this important meeting included leaders from various sectors within the hides and skins industry:  Head of the Butchers Union, Ministry of Animal Resources hides and skins experts, Tanneries owners as well as producers and processors such as a representatives of Women’s Producer group,  the UN Environment Programme, UNDP, and UNAMID Civil Affairs.

One of main points raised during the discussion was the need for investing in health care, training and awareness given the leather industry’s   strong dependency on the quality of its products which is affected gravely by parasites, diseases and scratches and by poor stripping, handling and storage, jeopardizing thus opportunities for competition in foreign markers.

Similarly, the need to focus on the provision of improved tools, machines , capacity development and working conditions was identified as an important element to increase productivity and  implement  quality assurance along the different stages of production.

The meeting further validated the methodology currently adopted by researchers who are conducting a study on the industry of tannery and leather production (eg. data collection tools, sampling, interlocutors  and geographical zones).

Implementation of this instrumental development intervention is made possible through the UNDP Darfur Livelihoods Value Chain Project funded in part by the USAID Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA) with the overall aim to improve incomes and job creation for vulnerable groups through improved markets, production and processing.

The value chain analysis is being implemented by PACT Consultancy in partnership with Alherayzee Global Consultancy Enterprises; both are competent Sudanese companies with extensive experience.  Preservation of the fragile Darfur environment is a cross cutting theme of the analysis.

For further information contact Nancy Archer at nancy.archer@undp.org

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