Tag Archives: agricultural cooperative

The ‘Ritart Group’ which sells under the ‘Ritea’ label, has been producing and selling herbs since 2014, but only in Yerevan and in Russia. Registering as an agricultural cooperative 2016 and becoming an ENPARD beneficiary has opened up new opportunities. ENPARD enabled the cooperative to update their production facility and make necessary repairs.On 22 November a dried fruit and herb production facility was opened in the village of Geghard in Kotayk marz.

2After the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the facility, Armen Harutyunyan, the Armenian Deputy Minister of Agriculture, highlighted the importance of Armenia’s cooperation with the EU in agriculture: ‘We started our negotiations with the European Union and the Austrian Development Agency three years ago. The core focus of ENPARD is to develop agriculture and we are deeply grateful for this support’.

3Frank Hartwich, the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) Project Manager for Industrial Development, praised the actions taken by the cooperative: ‘ENPARD is not an activity of one or two people, it’s an effort of people who work as a team. We are celebrating a very beautiful moment now, but this needs to continue. It will be a lot of work, but don’t be afraid. As long as you are committed, ENPARD will stay by your side to help you to build a viable and sustainable business’.

4Rita Martirosyan, the Head of Cooperative, welcomed ENPARD’s support: ‘The project has contributed to job creation, we have received very modern equipment, and we have established links with other agricultural cooperatives. As we have both good staff and a good production facility, we will work efficiently to produce dried fruit.We will launch a new label, ‘Rifruit’, in 2017. ENPARD will also help us to start export processes’.

ENPARD is a three-year programme, for which implementation began in January 2015. ENPARD supports the establishment of new agricultural cooperatives, strengthens existing cooperatives, builds business capacity, increases production volumes, aids product development, upgrades technologies, and helps to develop strategies for marketing and added value post-harvest. It is funded by the European Union and the Austrian Development Agency, and is being implemented by UNIDO and United Nations Development Programme.
The ‘Ritart Group’ cooperative is the sixth which ENPARD has supported in the dried fruit and herb value chain. These cooperatives are located in Aragatsavan, Byurakan, and Katnaghbyur in Aragatsotn marz, Dprabak in Gegharkunik marz, and Arevshat in Shirak marz.