A women’s dairy farming and agriculture cooperative

Tsento gewog (Block) lies in the upper north Paro valley towards the Chinese border, approximately 12 km away from Paro town. Tsento is quite cold compared to the lower regions and most of the villagers depend on agriculture, poultry and dairy farming. In the year 2009, a group of energetic young women founded a dairy cooperative. They started producing organic vegetables. However, they faced initial difficulties (and still do) due to the lack of equipment, in-depth knowledge and ideas.

Today in Phongdo village near Drukgyel Dzong almost all the farmers depend on dairy farming and vegetable and paddy cultivation. A few farmers set up their own milk processing units, producing yogurt (drinking yogurt, set yogurt, flavor yogurt), butter and cheese (ricotta cheese, local cheese). The farmers also started to cultivate a variety of seasonal vegetables. In winter, due to extreme cold however, they face difficulties maintaining the temperature needed to grow vegetables. They use “mini greenhouses” in their kitchen gardens by purchasing simple and affordable raw materials.

The farmers produce for the local market. The educated and young members look forward to learning more about modern organic farming.

The head of Drukyel Farmers, Dorji Bidha, is a very pro-active young farmer who holds a Bachelor Degree in Commerce from Royal Thimphu College. Upon request, Dorji Bidha also hosts our guests at her farm.