Snow Leopard Friendly Dairy Production and Marketing Project (Altai, Mongolia)


Bringing theory into practice

Curd and cheese making for local consumption is an age-old practice among herding communities of Mongolia. In Western Mongolia, tourism dependent herding communities of Uvs and Khovd provinces lost a valuable source of income during the COVID-19 pandemic. Already partnering in snow leopard conservation through a conservation-linked handicrafts program, these communities have been assisted with new livelihood sources through dairy processing.

Our work includes:

  • Training for the producers by experts in dairy processing and packaging
  • We provide 4 different types of packaging and labels to the communities
  • We deliver some necessary equipment such as a freezer, measuring items, and shapes.
  • We support the communities to market their produce.
  • Improved and hygienic production facilities.
“Making dairy products is not a new thing for us, but having trained teachers to make standardised, hygienically-clean products for sales is another new thing for us to learn”.

Tsendsuren, Ahuuna community leader


Connecting the Dots

This project relies on sustainable use of ecosystem services such as fodder and clean water, and integrates livelihood generation with species and habitat conservation. The communities sustainably manage their pastoral land as “Community Responsible Areas”, where part of the land dedicated to the protection of wildlife and maintenance and sustainable use of natural resources.

The local producers have agreed to contribute a certain amount of income (10%) from the sale of dairy products into a community fund, to undertake conservation activities in their community responsible area based on collective decisions. In total, participating communities are protecting 119,487 ha of snow leopard habitat through their livelihood activities.