Sustainable Agricultural Models in the Romanian Mountain Area

Project completed

The project was aimed at developing sustainable agriculture models in the Romanian mountains through integrating traditional activities in the modern economic environment in order to generate income, and preserve the cultural landscape with their high touristic value. The project targets sheep farming associations in North-Eastern Romania have been caring for the management of high mountain pastures.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Promoting economic growth and improving working conditions
01.01.2014 - 31.12.2016
CHF  1’306’863
Target groups

Six farmer associations in different counties of North-Eastern Romania representing 1,800 small-scale farming families dependent on sheep farming.

Activities The project mainly was acting on local and meso level, targeting highland pasture farming associations. Local-level operations included of building infrastructure (model sheepfolds), delivery of training the shepherds. At meso level the six farmer associations were strengthening and their marketing capacities have been improved. The macro level was addressed by the dissemination phase of project results; hereby the project was assisted by networks such as the National Rural Development Network, Mountain
Shepherds Federation, University of Agricultural Science and Veterinary Medicine and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

Achieved results:  

  • Baselines studies on pastures, sheep owners, cheese production were started and issues of product standardisation, labelling and marketing
  • sheepshelters and sheepfolds in 6 test sites built
  • water managment systems are installed and operational on all 6 alps
  • 636 farmers received support
  • All in all 546 farmers graduated from vocational training courses.
  • 10 visits/excursions to the project sites involving 188 persons took place in 2016.
  • 31 persons participated in two exchange visits to France (Haute Savoie) in June 2015/2016.
  • a standardized recipe that includes a technical file of production has been finalised
  • volume sold: 80% increased (average value for 6 alps)
  • price: 13% increase for yellow cheese and 21% increase for ricotta cheese (average value for 6 alps)
  • Product specification and technical assistance for 3 clusters of product types (verterinary requirements, traceability, HACCP plan) -> documented in folder "Best practice guide for dairy processing"
  • marketing study including: value chain analysis, potential analysis, target markets etc.
  • branding kit involving packaging, labelling, logo, names, design scheme, trade mark registration developed and delivered to the 6 locations
  • The project partners participated with product stands in 8/ differnet fairs all over Romania
  • label "de la Munte" developed. Product registration is ongoing, they have all the supporting documents available. So far they use the registration” De La Munte"
  • website developed: www.
  • The Media appearance is documented under
  • the total of managed pastures are monitored which means 1155ha (cleaned from stones, flattened, floral structure diversified)
  • pastures were improved by introducing 9 indigenous floral species with a high nutritional value. The mix of the seeds was approved by the National Pasture Institute in Brasov

The project has been completed at an operational level.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Swiss Contribution to the enlarged EU
Project partners Contract partner
Private sector
  • Swiss Private Sector

Other partners

Intermediary body: KEK-CDC; Executing Agency: SAB

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    1’306’863 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    755’013
Project phases Phase 7 01.07.2014 - 30.09.2017   (Completed)

Phase 6 01.01.2014 - 31.12.2016   (Completed)

Phase 5 01.07.2013 - 30.06.2016   (Completed) Phase 4 01.07.2013 - 30.06.2016   (Completed) Phase 3 01.04.2013 - 30.04.2016   (Completed) Phase 2 15.05.2012 - 30.11.2019   (Completed) Phase 1 01.07.2011 - 30.11.2019   (Completed)