I Got Milk In Afghanistan

What’s your favourite flavour of ice cream?

Chocolate, Strawberry, Vanilla…

Walk into any ice cream parlour and you’ll be able to choose from an outrageous range of flavour combos. In Afghanistan, this delicious dairy dessert is changing lives. Here’s the inside scoop on how.

The land in Afghanistan is mostly desert, so communities need to find ways to live in this challenging environment. So families raise goats, as these small animals are adapted to survive in dry conditions. They provide milk and cheese and deliver a valuable source of food and income.

Using goats in this way is nothing new, but local organisation CRDSA does things a little differently and is making massive changes in local communities.

First they give goats to the poorest families, helping those who are most in need. They also provide training in basic veterinary skills, so the animals are well looked after and cared for. Special drought resistant seeds are distributed, so the animals always have enough food to eat. These factors help the goats to survive the dry season and enable them to deliver more milk as they can continue to produce it all though the year.

With so much extra milk around, CRDSA have also found ways to improve its collection and distribution. They’ve brought local farmers together to form cooperatives and have setup a milk processing centre. 225 coop members bring their milk to the centre and most of this is sold to yoghurt and cheese producers.

But the surplus milk is now being used in an exciting new way. It’s purchased by a company called Herat, who use it to make ice cream. They’ve got some pretty unique flavours including mulberry, saffron and watermelon.

So next time you’re enjoying an ice cream on a hot summer day, remember the cool work being carried out by CRDSA. By combining traditional farming practices with innovative techniques, they’re scooping people out of poverty.