Weekly Observation Notes (22-31 December 2021 )

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ET432 Dairy Firm
Long term relations have the tendency to increase relationships and credibility with respondents, this is what we have realised and have learnt in the progress of the SFD project. In our today’s visit to this firm, we held many discussions with the firm owner.

He nervously explained to us that:
1. The fodder cost has highly increased, since June 2020;
2. The Harer beer factory limiting the amount of beer production at the Harer district beer factory or shifting most of its beer production centre to Addis Ababa to minimize the cost of transportation and start to transport the Harer beer brand directly from Addis Ababa to the Northern part of Ethiopia. Formerly Harer beer is exclusively produced in Harer beer factory here in Harer, but since it’s currently sold to Heineken Beer factory that produces Waliya, Harer, and Heineken beers they can produce it anywhere convenient for them. This shifting of production district and minimizing the size of beer production in Harer beer factory, it’s indirectly affecting the amount of “bi-product” we achieve from the factory that serves us as one type of feed for our livestock; and
3. Casual employees are not sufficiently available and also those found not interested to join our firm. In his understanding, the size of casual employees decreased because of high control for informal entrants to Harer town that has no legal Identification Number (ID) for security purposes and serious control mechanism on migrants pass through Harer town to the Somali region of Ethiopia is preventing massive people movement.

The other thing he disclosed to us:
1. As he has two pickup cars that provide milk distribution service, one UD that transport animals feed, but still he didn’t want to tell us a Bajaje he had which an employee told for us, as time goes, relationship and trust more and more develop he may do that. According to his statement, one of his pickups was bought a decade before, the other pickup five years ago, and the UD bought around 7 years.
2. He has a plan to transfer or sell a firm in the near future for he is almost retired and wants to shift to other businesses like distributing packed products which is he is undecided what will be.
3. While I asked him why he doesn’t buy a machine that milks cows, he responded that no employee will manage or use it properly; if that doesn’t get properly used, a disease on a cows gut will be transferred to all cows that is dangerous; so for him, it is better to use the traditional method. 

Most of all, the serious issue we analysed from our respondents was the lack of employees and input cost increment. He is still looking and calling many people to find them. Available employees asked for high salary rates but that is not profitable for him.

At the time of our arrival, he was the one who was pouring the milk.

ET – 587 Garage
This respondent told us that the customers always want the owner of the firm to work for them and that this will cause moral damage to the employees but that most of the workers do not care about the quality of the work and are in a hurry to finish the job rather than the quality. Most employees work hard when they were beginners or as soon as they started the work for some months then step by step they will start to be lazy and careless.
He said: “I once had such experience. I hired a new employee from another region. He was very smart and hardworking when he started the work. I was very happy with his job and I bought a mobile phone for him to encourage him. But he began to meet the locals and started to gather his friends and then gradually changed and became lazy and indifferent to his work.

Today, When I arrived at the firm I observed something new, this respondent is trying to attract market share and increase revenue by meeting the unique needs of the local community, traditionally, the local people use fenugreek(Abish) as daily food consumption, and the firm mainly provides milling service of abish for his customers, so my respondent-wife receiving 10,000 birrs from her husband and bought Abish from wholesalers 70 Birr per kg and washed and prepared it and already starred retailing it for there customers 80 Birr per kg, and she also bought a suitable balance for this work.






ET435 Torno house
Today our respondent shared with us his previous experiences and showed us the grinding plastic materials machine on the laptop which he presented on an exhibition prepared in Addis Ababa with Ethiopia Science and Technology Institute. The machine will create a job opportunity for plastic collectors, plastic sellers ( those who grind the plastic materials) and supply it to the whole sellers (recyclers).

Currently, he copied a portable milling machine from the internet and he is in the process of manufacturing it. This milling machine is very compatible with remote rural area people that do not have access to a milling machine and travel a long distance to access it. Coastwise, the machine is very cheap and effective. He said: “All machines I manufacture have high quality and better durability than imported. I have gained this quality manufacturing process from my father.” He also attained the training prepared by Ethiopia Development Bank in the Technique and Vocational College in Dire Dawa and he found it helpful in supporting the experience he has.

He requested L-IFT company to create market linkage in national and international levels and also to promote his products on its page: 

ET316– When we arrived at this firm, We found them busy with work, but she was willing to talk to us for a while then we asked her how the week went, about things around work and about transactions. This week she told us that four workers had left within one month and that she was very upset because they had been given a month off work from the other factory but they started by saying that they did not have a job. After a month of training receiving their salary and they resigned for various reasons, and half resigned without notice.

Despite receiving good orders this week, the power outage in the area continues.

ET 166– liquid soup production
We have a good experience with this respondent and we have been talking for a long time outside of her work, she tells us about things she has at home and new things in general, and this brings us closer together. She is strong in her work, her attitude towards business and her plans for expansion are good and her co-worker is as close as a family. Her work is doing well now. Her workplace is located a short distance from the main road, so she started promoting her products on the street. They only sell packaged products here, but for those who want to buy only the liquid soap, they show where the main product is produced. People buy it in such a way that it costs less.







ET641 We have written about her a bunch of times. I have maintained last week that she rented a new shop for her designed leather bags. Unfortunately, she hasn’t opened it yet, it is because the previous person who has rented that room hasn’t finished unpacking their stuff yet. Before knowing this story I and my colleague went to the shop to visit her and it was close and we called her right away and she says she is really angry about things not going the way she planned and we went to her firm and meet her. In the process of taking the weekly report, she happens to tell us this story.


ET714 is busy these days we have no clue what’s happening. We have visited him more than once and he wasn’t available he was out to buy raw materials and some other stuff, so we got the weekly report through phone and we meet him out of the firm and we asked him the new survey.


ET356 is engaged in rental service. This firm is in a desperate situation the firm is open as always but no one seems to rent the machinery they are providing. The Machinery is high quality it’s from Italy, Germany so they are expensive than the other firms. So this week there they happen to rent only one machinery and have one expense just for the machine to be checked a little bit and the owner is planning to start a new business, she is not sure what exactly she will open but she hasn’t changed her plan in closing the firm yet.


ET423 One of the closed firms is still not working he has stopped trying on making it work so he is running the household with his saved money he told us to pray for him. He is still suspected of cooperating with the Tigray terrorist by donating money The truth is unknown yet.


ET384 our respondent who is engaged in garment service was having an expo and because of that, we couldn’t meet him in person. Even though we know he is not there we will visit his firm for the observation and he will send the weekly report via phone and we asked him for the computation survey through phone as well.


ET229 When we arrive at this firm they were packing some T-shirts, it was a huge order they had gotten so far.


ET983 this firm is doing well patients as getting treated and their service performance is getting better time to time. The owner of the firm used to sleep there 4times a week but now they have employed a new employee who will look after them so she won’t be working at night.

ET935-When I arrive at the firm for the weekly transaction report, the owner was working on statues. He was using traditional materials like chisels for shaping and writing on the statues.

But as he told me when he does it in this way, it takes more energy and time. For this reason, he has a plan to buy a modern machine for the future which saves energy and time.









ET516– woodwork
When I arrived at the firm today, my respondent was buying and unloading raw materials(mdf).and he made the purchase in cash and made payment as shown in the first picture.









ET358-Wood Work.
What I noticed during my visit today, My respondent was alone and very busy because his wife went to church to perform religious services. On the other hand, 3 of his employees asked him to increase their salary but he did not agree with the request so
he gave them an orientation about the general rules of his business. If they agree with this fact they will continue their regular work tomorrow after taking a rest and thinking carefully, If not, he told them to quit their job by tomorrow and he was doing a lot of work alone and I had to wait a long time to get the regular report and conduct surveys.