Sayad Embraces Risk and Reward



Sayad, 48, and his family of five used to grow apples, nuts and vegetables, and raise cattle in Armenia’s Berd Region. Recently, they embraced a new challenge: starting their own raspberry farm. It was something Sayad had never done before, but after hearing that the fruit was easier to grow and more lucrative to sell he immediately wanted to try.

In 2020, during an overwhelmingly “fruitful” first season, Sayad sold more than 500 kg of raspberries, thus cancelling out all debt incurred from buying enough seedings to cover 1,000 acres of field.

“I am happy to have dived into this farming business. Every time I come to the field I feel contented with my raspberry harvest. It’s amazing!Harvesting is a job for the entire family, meaning that all my children—Mark, 4, Mane, 8, Milena, 9, Meri, 14—are a part of it,” he said. “I am not afraid of difficulties. If there is no challenge, there will be no success.”

Through the economic development component of our Breaking the Cycle of Poverty Program (BCPP) FAR provided a drip irrigation system for the raspberry plants—which is what enabled Sayan to actually establish his raspberry farm which, on an average day during harvest season, yields 60 kg of fruit.

Through BCPP, FAR has been working to raise the income and promote greater self-sustainability among the rural population of the Berd Region.