Verde Beef - Expanding the Private Sector

Verde Beef was established in 2014. The company purchases one-year-old calves from local farmers, fatten them to meet export standards, and then process for export.

With the support of USAID, Verde Beef was able to secure a USAID Development Credit Authority loan of $3.5 million from Zemen Bank in Ethiopia.

Video Transcript 
1 00:00:11,000 --> 00:00:21,000 [music] 2 00:00:21,500 --> 00:00:25,000 So Verde Beef is a beef processing business located in Ethiopia. 3 00:00:25,000 --> 00:00:30,000 The company was started back in 2014 by myself, my business partner from the U.S., 4 00:00:30,000 --> 00:00:33,000 and then a couple of international agricultural experts. 5 00:00:33,500 --> 00:00:37,000 and we joined together to start this beef operation that you see here today. 6 00:00:38,000 --> 00:00:42,000 Verde Beef's business model is that we buy basically a one-year-old cattle from local farmers, 7 00:00:42,000 --> 00:00:46,000 here in Ethiopia, which provides an income for them and their families, 8 00:00:46,000 --> 00:00:49,000 and we'll raise that animal on our feedlot for three to six months... 9 00:00:49,000 --> 00:00:52,000 and then slaughter them for export to the Middle East, which is our primary market. 10 00:00:53,000 --> 00:00:57,000 We started the business in Ethiopia because Ethiopia has a perfect combination of natural resources, 11 00:00:57,000 --> 00:01:03,000 the fifth largest population of cattle in the world, and a place where job creation is really needed, 12 00:01:03,000 --> 00:01:06,000 Because there’s so much unemployment or underemployment in this country. 13 00:01:06,000 --> 00:01:10,000 And the cost of producing the beef here versus any of the other markets in the world, 14 00:01:10,000 --> 00:01:12,000 makes it really advantageous to do this business here. 15 00:01:12,000 --> 00:01:18,000 Once we bring the cattle onto the feedlot, we utilize a specialized ration … 16 00:01:18,000 --> 00:01:21,000 combined with ingredients we grow on the farm here, 17 00:01:21,000 --> 00:01:26,000 And we also purchase from locals and mix those together to feed to the animals. 18 00:01:26,000 --> 00:01:28,000 And we do that to maximize their daily weight gain … 19 00:01:29,000 --> 00:01:33,000 over the three- to six-month period of time that they spend here on the feedlot. 20 00:01:33,000 --> 00:01:40,000 We started the business in 2014 with some U.S. equity investment and then in 2016, 21 00:01:40,000 --> 00:01:45,000 we got expansion financing through a loan guarantee program that USAID provided. 22 00:01:45,000 --> 00:01:47,000 And that enabled us to expand the size of the feedlot 23 00:01:47,000 --> 00:01:51,000 to build some of the cattle pens you see here today as well as purchase more bulls. 24 00:01:51,000 --> 00:01:56,000 We currently have a slaughterhouse under construction that we expect to have completed in February of 2018. 25 00:01:56,000 --> 00:02:02,000 That will provide a capacity of 450 animals per day in the first phase. 26 00:02:04,000 --> 00:02:13,000 Verde Beef provided water for our community, and jobs and land for our children. 27 00:02:13,000 --> 00:02:16,000 They are really helping us. 28 00:02:16,000 --> 00:02:21,000 Verde Beef gave cattle to 550 women in our community, 29 00:02:22,000 --> 00:02:26,000 fattened the cattle, and let the women sell the cattle for profit, 30 00:02:26,000 --> 00:02:31,000 to lift these women out of poverty. 31 00:02:32,000 --> 00:02:35,000 Today, our company has 3,000 bulls on site with a capacity for 10,000. 32 00:02:35,000 --> 00:02:41,000 And our plan over the next five years is to grow up to be 81,000 head on the feedlot at one time. 33 00:02:41,000 --> 00:02:53,000 [music]

Last updated: May 23, 2017

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