The catalogue of Moldovan women producers has been launched: "Buy Local, Natural, Sustainable products"
On August 4th, 2022, the first catalogue of women producers from Moldova has been launched. It includes stories of women producers, as well as the products they develop with care and passion at home, in Moldova. The catalogue has been launched within the “Support local women producers in business development, for sustainable growth and resilience against the COVID-19 pandemic and its potential aftermaths” project, implemented by Sweet Mary, in collaboration with UN Women, with the financial support of Sweden.
The event started with a mini exhibition of local products and continued with the speeches of officials, the intervention of partners and women producers, but also with the presentation of the catalogue.
Nicu Popescu, the deputy prime minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration states that "The well-being of our country depends on the ability to produce, export, ensure safe and decent wages, fair working conditions and attractive positions. In this regard, we have structured our efforts on three directions: 1 – attracting investments, 2 – increasing exports, 3 – promoting tourism. This catalogue will make it easier for us to promote the economic interest of the country."
At the same time, Svetlana Andries, UN Women Moldova programme specialist, mentioned "Women in the Republic of Moldova have enormous potential due to their contribution to economic development, a potential that we want to make heard. Statistics show that if women participated with men equally in the labor market, the global economy would grow by 28 trillion dollars , which implies 26% of global gross domestic product according to a study conducted in 2015. Via interventions supporting women producers, as well as by promoting their equal participation in the labour market, we want to highlight the fact that women can do everything. The human and economic capital of women involved in economy and business plays an important role in family well-being, childcare, community development, but also of the entire country."
"We must recognize that the business environment in Moldova's villages does not offer major opportunities for the population to get actively involved on the labour market and this is affecting women disproportionately. We are grateful to donors for the support provided to women producers, thus ensuring that they can withstand the conditions created. In fact, each of us can support and motivate these women by purchasing their products. The examples of women presented in this catalogue show that a woman can achieve anything and that the agri-food sector has prospects", says Sergiu Gherciu, State Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Food Industry.
Female entrepreneurs, especially small local producers and rural women business owners, have lower incomes and profits than businesses led by men due to systemic gender-based obstacles. However, statistical data show that the economic and financial results of women-owned enterprises reach or even outweigh the results of male-owned enterprises if they operate on equal terms. In addition, the economic impact of the pandemic has affected women and, in particular, women entrepreneurs to a greater extent.
However, women producers demonstrate resilience and ambitions to reduce existing inequalities, contribute to economic growth and bring high added value to the national economy.
Among the producers present at the event was Victoria Rusnac, the founder of the "Honey House" company. Victoria says that "6 years ago, my grandfather, a beekeeper in the 3rd generation, was left with a large amount of honey that he could not sell. We looked for solutions, we analyzed the market and we saw very little local honey on the shelves of the stores. I put a lot of effort and love into this business, and shortly after, I was able to produce the best honey for people's health."
Aliona Vrabie, entrepreneur, told from the backstage of the CUCA pasta production "From the passion for traditional dishes appeared the idea of producing homemade pasta! The business is growing with small steps and a lot of responsibility. We work hard and with dedication, to be the best. Thus, we increase sales and even export!"
The catalogue brings together 50 women producers from the country and it is a useful and informative source for promoting the business of women producers in the Republic of Moldova, thus stimulating sales as a support measure for them.
UN Women also expresses gratitude to the representatives of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development; United Nations Development Programme (UNDP); the International Fund for Agricultural Development; Entrepreneurship Development Organization; Kaufland Moldova; and BERDs Design Hotel Chisinau, for their valuable contribution to the event and for providing information on business development opportunities and funding sources.
Also, within the "Support to local women producers in business development, for sustainable growth and resilience against the COVID-19 pandemic" project, the second round of the Voucher Support Programme has been launched. It offers financing opportunities for at least 10 business development projects led by women in the Republic of Moldova with 60 thousand MDL each. The call for proposals is open to local women producers with small production capacity, regardless of their legal status, location, activity, as well as business experience. Within the first edition of the Voucher Support Programme, 13 women benefited from financial aid of 30 thousand MDL each.
The catalogue of women producers is available here.