The main market day of the area is today, as a result, I went to the kebele early in the morning to perform my usual task. While I was walking in the farm field, women were busy harvesting cabbage and packing the produce so as to transport it to the market. From the study, I found that vegetables like fossolia (green beans), cabbage, and chili are harvested by women (about 90% is done by women). The payment they get depends on the amount of produce they collect. The employers (farm owners) calculate the wage rate in such a manner. Other farm activities like plowing, fertilizer/chemical application, raising of seedling, planting, row/furrow making, watering, purchasing of inputs, are wholly performed by men. In summary, I observed that the women of the study area are very strong, maybe stronger than their male counterparts in many ways. The problem they have is that their concerns/ needs are not given due attention by the organizations working in the value chain including union and BoARD, secondly, both the services rendered by union and BoARD are in favor of males, thirdly, due to the economic constraints women have, they couldn’t fulfill many of the requirements set by those organization to take part in vegetable production effectively. In such kind of interventional approach, it will be difficult to achieve sustainable development Goals (SDGs), especially, the ones related to Goal #5, Goal #1, and Goal # 2 because women make up 50 or 50+% of the population.
Video: Women harvesting cabbage