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Challenges 2019, 10(1), 2; https://doi.org/10.3390/challe10010002

Improving Health and Wealth by Introduction of an Affordable Bacterial Starter Culture for Probiotic Yoghurt Production in Uganda

1
Yoba for Life Foundation, 1079 WB Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2
Department of Molecular Cell Biology, VU University Amsterdam (VUA), 1081 HV Amsterdam, The Netherlands
3
Heifer Project International, Kampala 28491, Uganda
4
Canadian R&D Centre for Human Microbiome and Probiotics, Lawson Health Research Institute, London, ON N6A 4V2, Canada
5
Departments of Microbiology and Immunology, and Surgery, Western University, London, ON N6A 3K7, Canada
6
ARTIS-Micropia, 1018 CZ Amsterdam, The Netherlands
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 December 2018 / Revised: 2 January 2019 / Accepted: 3 January 2019 / Published: 9 January 2019
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Abstract

In rural Africa, income generating activities of many households heavily depend on agricultural activities. In this paper, we present the results of a multi-year intervention whereby dairy farmers and small-scale entrepreneurs were taught to convert their milk into a probiotic yoghurt using an innovative bacterial starter culture and basic equipment. This intervention creates additional sources of income and employment for people involved in the delivery of milk as well as production, distribution, and sales of yoghurt. Besides the economic benefits, the consumption of the probiotic yoghurt can contribute to reduction of the incidence and severity of diarrhea, respiratory tract infections, atopic diseases, alleviate the symptoms of stomach ulcers, and decrease the uptake of aflatoxins in the body. With minimal external financial support, 116 communities or small entrepreneurs have been able to start, expand, and maintain a business by production and sales of probiotic yoghurt. Applied business models and success rate in terms of revenues and profitability varied per region and depended on location, culture, ownership structure, wealth status, and gender. View Full-Text
Keywords: Uganda; Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG; probiotics; Yoghurt; health improvement; economic development; women empowerment; Pro Poor business model; bottom of pyramid Uganda; Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG; probiotics; Yoghurt; health improvement; economic development; women empowerment; Pro Poor business model; bottom of pyramid
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Westerik, N.; Wacoo, A.P.; Anyimo, E.; Matovu, W.; Reid, G.; Kort, R.; Sybesma, W. Improving Health and Wealth by Introduction of an Affordable Bacterial Starter Culture for Probiotic Yoghurt Production in Uganda. Challenges 2019, 10, 2.

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