YBM, a new private avocado oil processing company, has gone operational within Yirgalem Agro-processing Park in Southern region of Ethiopia.
Established with 104 million Birr investment capital, the new factory is set to start processing and exporting avocado oil to different countries, according to the Ministry of Trade and Industry of Ethiopia.
Mr. Tamene Gobena, General Manager of YBM indicated that by extracting oil from avocado fruit, the factory will export its products to European market. Some 40,000 smallholder farmers found near Yirgalem Agro-processing park will provide avocado to the factor. YBM, which officially began production two weeks ago, has created jobs for 50 permanent and 150 temporary workers.
Expanding its production, the factory plans to increase its number of employees to 500, according to Mr. Tamene, who indicated that his company has created additional income for the smallholder farmers in the area and jobs at the factory for their children.
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In addition to YBM, another avocado processing factor, named, Sanvado, has been extracting avocado oil and exporting to the Netherlands for the past three years, according to the report of the Ministry of Trade and Industry. Sanvado is also located within the state-owned Yirgalem Agro-processing Park.
In recent years the Government of Ethiopia has been working to improve the quality and production of avocados in an attempt to include the Fruit to its export items list. The Government of Israel through its development agency MASHAV, and USAID have been assisting the Ministry of Agriculture of Ethiopia in introducing new avocado varieties and providing technical support.
Hass is one of the highly preferred avocado variety from Israel, which Ethiopian farmers have been producing for export over the past few years.