MEKARYA – Improving The Lives Of Salt Farmers In Amed, Bali

Program Name: MEKARYA 

(Business Development Support to Salt Farmers in Amed, Bali)

Implementing Partner: PLUS (Platform Usaha Sosial)
Sector: Local Economic Development
Location: Amed
Program Duration: 24 months
Program Period:  30 October 2019 – 31 December 2021


A. Proposed Objective

To empower and strengthen MPIG Garam Amed’s (Amed Salt Farmer Association) business and capabilities, and preserve the salt farming community and tradition in Amed, Bali.

B. Key Indicators

Impact will be measured through achievement of following outcome:

  • End of Program Outcome (Year 1): MPIG Garam Amed runs better business practice, in which the business implement improvement strategies for better business operations by:
    • Analyzing their internal productivity by:
      • Having clear division of work
      • Identifying a sustainable business model
      • Utilizing current assets for increased production
    • Analyzing their business health by developing monthly financial reports
    • Having frequent feedbacks and iteration process
  • End of Program Outcome (Year 2): MPIG Garam Amed has a stronger pipeline and/or forge new non-business and business partnership by:
    • Understanding their value proposition
    • Being aware of partnership mapping and creating partnership strategy
    • Developing a communication kit to promote Amed salt to potential businesses through online or offline media


C. Background and Context

  1. Salt farming industry is viewed as a hard-labour and low income business as it requires extensive labour work and is dependent on weather conditions and season – making it  a high risk of low return business. 
  2. The similar situation was faced by the salt farming industry in Amed, Bali. Since 2009, the industry has been suffering from the loss of farmers, business stagnancy and lack of regeneration. Over the years, the salt farmers in Amed have received support from a variety of organisations, both local and international, but challenges still linger to preserve the tradition of salt farming. 
  3. Since its establishment, MPIG Garam Amed (salt farmers community in Amed) is meant to become the business entity overseeing the production and sales of Amed Salt. However, in its implementation, MPIG still struggles with a lack of strategic planning and direction. In addition, lack of new technology innovation has also impacted how the business keeps developing products and innovating in the line of production or service offering. Last but not least, there is a general lack of awareness and interest about salt farming. If MPIG continues to be unable to attract quality talent for its business, then productivity will suffer and they may miss out on more sales opportunities. In the long run, it will result in little or no interest from the next generation to carry on the tradition and business. Thus, making the Amed salt farming industry as a whole in danger of extinction and becoming a loss to one of Indonesia’s traditions and culture as Amed salt is truly unique to the area, region, country and globally.
  4. William & Lily Foundation (WLF) is aware that the problem is an intricate one as there are many factors and contributors to the web of complexity, because many of the solutions still require an incredible amount of time, investment and other key stakeholders. Conversely, WLF sees a potential for the Amed salt farming industry to develop and grow through capacity building, market expansion, product diversification and regeneration.


D. Brief Description

1. Through a collaboration with Platform Usaha Sosial (PLUS), WLF seeks to address the challenges, while preserving the tradition in producing distinct product, improving sustainability of salt farming tradition, as well as elevating the status and lowering the gender gap involvement in the business, by:

  • Creating a strong business foundation by imparting relevant, applicable and replicable business knowledge.
  • Raising interest and awareness about salt farming to increase the likelihood of regeneration and preservation.
  • Increase in women and youth’s involvement in notable roles within the industry.

2. The program, also known as MEKARYA, will focus on providing capacity building assistance to the MPIG Garam Amed. In the hopes that with an increase in business acumen, comes stronger business sustainability, and thus leading to a continuing preservation of the salt farming industry and tradition.

3. The program activities: 

  • Coaching sessions by experts focusing on:
    • Institutional (cooperative) management – to strengthen the management capacity for planning, implementing, organizing and monitoring operational business activities.
    • Human resource management – to assist in understanding the basic knowledge of human resource management, playing an active role in it and managing administration to improve efficiency, effectiveness and productivity. 
    • Administration and financial management – to improve the management capacity to develop standard operating procedures on daily administration and financial reporting.
    • Monitoring and evaluation management – to create systems to ensure the work plan has been implemented based on established indicators
  • Support on stakeholder engagement and partnership development, among others individual potential buyer, local business, bank, non-governmental organization, small and medium enterprises, village government, local government institutions in district level and ministry.
  • Support in digital/online marketing (business-to-consumer/B2C model) as part of sales pivoting impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Field mentoring by experts on human resource, finance and business model.
  • Assistance in legal compliance in regard to legal and business permits.
  • Support in branding and communications material development.

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