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Microentrepreneurs increase health with mobile milk powder stores

Bangladeshi women selling milk powder from Arla in rural Bangladesh are raising awareness on nutrition as well as their income. The so called “Pushti-Ambassadors” are important in combating malnutrition.

Arla’s Dano® Daily Pushti enhanced milk powder quickly became a success in Bangladesh, when it was launched in 1961. The product is important in combating Bangladesh’ problems with child malnutrition because of its modest price and abundance of nutrients. But there was a problem. Whereas the distribution in cities went great, rural areas posed a greater problem due to lack of infrastructure and distribution network – 70% of the country’s problem lives outside the cities.

A partnership that contributes to the local community

The solution to this distribution problem is simple but effective. Women from the countryside are equipped with a bicycle, a tablet and a backpack full of Dano Daily Pushti milk powder. Going from village to village, the women can easily meet the customers where they are. All the while, they take the time to educate the villagers on proper nutrition and the benefits and application of milk powder. The so-called Pushti-ambassadors are proving successful in their efforts to market the milk powder.

The ambassadors are mobilized through Arla’s cooperation with the Dutch NGO BoP Innovation Centre, the NGO dNet and the social entrepreneurship iSocial. The mutually beneficial partnership between Arla, the organisations and the Pushti-ambassadors not only spreads the knowledge of milk powder and health in rural Bangladesh. It also boosts the income of the women travelling the countryside, selling the products.

Working towards equality and sustainability

This project taps in to several Sustainable Development Goal’s (SDG’s). For example, SDG 3 on “good health and well-being” and SDG 10 on “reduced inequalities” are important factors for a better, more sustainable world. In the last couple of years, gender equality has been improving a lot in Bangladesh. This partnership is giving women their own sustainable means for earning money, which contributes positively to the development.

Today, the Dano Daily Pushti sales force is 200 motivated women strong. Before 2022, Arla and the partners behind the project is aiming towards having 5.000 female microentrepreneurs working.

Source: Arla Foods