Ukraine Horticulture Business Development Project (UHBDP)

2014 - 2022 (Closed March 2022)

MEDA and its partners worked together to develop the horticultural sector of the Odesa, Mykolaiv, Kherson, and Zaporizhzhia regions of Ukraine. The goal of this project was to increase the incomes of 44,000 smallholder horticultural small and medium businesses.

This project was a 7-year initiative to improve the horticultural market system for small farmers and entrepreneurs in southern Ukraine. UHBDP provided these farmers and entrepreneurs with technological incentives, e-commerce platforms, business skills training, and market linkages to increase their yields and incomes.



To improve the livelihoods of 44,000 men and women farmers by boosting their annual sales to $40 million USD, and increase their production to 50,000 tons.


The project positively impacted 45,000 men and women horticultural farmers and small businesses.


Despite southern Ukraine’s large agricultural and human resources, and the important role agriculture contributes to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and employment – government policy reforms have stagnated. This, combined with below standard business and production practices, and inadequate sales models, have resulted in low crop yields, lower earnings per acre, and family incomes.

Horticulture small businesses in southern Ukraine face many challenges, including substandard business and production techniques and inadequate sales models. As a result, these small business owners and farmers earn less income. These challenges are made worse by substandard environmental practices that hinder agricultural development and deplete soil fertility resulting in adverse effects on food safety and food security.

Women farmers also lack access to information on harvest, post-harvest, and market knowledge along with reduced access to materials supplied by men service agents. These challenges lead to poor agricultural practices from women, who are involved in day-to-day labor and farm operations.


Despite the above-mentioned obstacles, they presented an opportunity for the UHBDP to engage directly with men and women farmers and small businesses. The UHBDP project strengthened their capacities in gender and environmental sustainability and improved their business practices.


The UHBDP project improved Ukraine’s horticultural economic systems. It:

  • Increased the production, harvest, and post-harvest capabilities by hosting educational events on topics including environmental best practices and gender equality
  • Provided a purchase incentive fund and partnered with twenty-three companies to implement an e-voucher program for environmental certification and sustainable materials, products, and services.
  • Fostered environmental sustainable production practices for producers trained on environmentally sustainable practices through online and face-to-face events
  • Built business capabilities and market linkages to partner with lead firms and farmer cooperatives. As a result, it increased their sales during harvest seasons and built the organizational capacities of small farmers and entrepreneurs.


Project Stories

At the end of MEDA’s UBHDP, over 40,000 small farmers’ livelihoods and entrepreneurs’ businesses have improved

October 8, 2021

After five promising years, MEDA’s Ukrainian Horticulture Business Development Project has ended. Taking place in four southern regions of Ukraine, this project was funded by the Government of Canada and...

What to do when you can’t visit the field: MEDA’s first virtual trip to Ukraine

March 31, 2021

Ladies and gentleman, this is your captain speaking…we are now approaching Kyiv, Ukraine where the time is 11:30 am. Please...


Volodymyr partners with MEDA to ensure his beehives survive and his business thrives

January 11, 2021

For three years, the Ukrainian beekeepers have been actively testing chlorella algae, which is used as feed for bees. This...

Impacts of COVID-19 on women and youth at MEDA: Learning from our projects

September 23, 2020

There is a threat to the gains made on furthering gender equality around the world – the COVID-19 pandemic. We...

COVID-19: Moving From Response to Resilience

August 17, 2020

As experts working in market systems for the past 65 years, we have witnessed shocks and stresses before, in countries...

ORACS client

Ukrainian clients pivot in response to COVID-19

May 6, 2020

Changes in the global business climate, affect all business no matter the place, size or industry. Although many businesses try...

Our Cumulative Impact by FY2022​ (Project Closing Year)


Direct Individuals


Direct Businesses


Direct Women Clients


Direct Youth Clients


Indirect Individuals


Indirect Businesses


Decent Work


Total Budget


This program was undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada provided through Global Affairs Canada.


This project was implemented by MASHAV, MEGA Bank, Zemlya Tavrii, LASKA Fund, ORACS (Odesa Regional Agricultural Consultancy Services), UWFC (Ukrainian Women Farmer’s Council), Agro-Tavria, and five local technical universities.