Study trip 2016

Summary study trip 3rd July – 1st August 2016


Chalotte Vad, project leader and architect, Architects without Borders

Peter Ulrich, Dairy technologist, Dairy without Borders

Karl Simonsen, Dairy technologist, Dairy without Borders

Nurjan Khavdselem, Interpreter

Shuree Sukhbaatar, Country Manager Mongolian branch, ecoLeap Foundation

Joanna Ryter, Intern, ecoLeap Foundation



KDP wants to examine the possibility of a academic collaboration with the Mongolian educational institutions and to seek information and possibilities for for livestock feed optimization, enhanced shelter building (protecting cattle and yak from harsh weather conditions) all efforts to enhance the milk yield.

KDP also want to start a collaboration with Mongolian University of Science and Technology (MUST), School of Food Industrial technology for the training of the future staff the Khovsgol Dairy facility. The KDP team will select two suitable young persons from the Khatgal area to complete the training as dairy technicians in Ulaanbaatar. KDP will provide the funding of the education.

KDP seeks to find further partners and funding opportunities for KDP.

KDP wants to write up a partnership agreement with Sarlagiin Saikhan Khishig Cooperative (SSKh) and align the project goals.


3rd July

Flight Copenhagen- Ulaanbaatar

Arrival Ulaanbaatar


4th July, Ulaanbaatar

10:00 am Meeting and data collection at MULS /Mongolian University of Life Science

Mr. Kheruuga, Director

Mr. Sukhtulga, Director for International Administration Department

Mr. Sukhtulga  was very happy to meet KDP representatives and to provide more details on projects implemented in the area.

He mentions that they are enthusiastic to partner with KDP and would be happy to help KDP to connect with relevant contacts. He encouraged KDP to contact the department with specific questions and topics and the department would be happy to assist.

In addition, he recommended the projects below to refer:

  • Livestock and Agricultural Production Project by World Bank
  • International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFFAD)
  • Green Gold Project

Key information: According to statistics, 87% of herders have not more than 200 heads of livestock, which means it is not adequate to run business or for sustaining their livelihood if unexpected expenses occur.

With 200 heads of livestock it is hard for the herders to afford for their children’s education fee, daily running and what is more concerning is that they are much more vulnerable to weather conditions, like for example the Dzud, extreme cold winters.

Due to the exposure to natural disaster or loss of livestock, the majority of the herders migrate to urban areas or Ulaanbaatar city for employment opportunities.

From left: Peter Ulrich, Shuree Sukhbaatar, Mr. Sukhtulga, Chalotte Vad and Karl Simonsen











12:00 am Meeting and data collection at MULS /Mongolian University of Life Science,

School of Economics and Business

Erdenechuluun Tumur, Senior lecturer, Department of Agriculture & Applied Economics 

The Institute for Natural Resources and Agricultural Economics focus on providing feasibility study and business plan development.

Key information: Erdenechuluun mentions the overgrazing concerns and that the department can provide estimations on appropriate ration of animals per pasture land. He also proposed more research on the living conditions and special requirements of yak’s in the Khovsgol area and how to improve stables and fodder for yak, as it is a field with very limited data available.

He proposed as solutions for the dairy facilities to include a septic tank for waste water management. The waste water could be used as fertilizer in selected pasture land to make hay or other crops.

He suggested the funding for the project could be requested from local development fund as well as international funding.


16:00 pm Meeting and data collection at MUST, Mongolian University of Science and Technology, School of Food Industrial technology of MUST

Doctor Soninkhishig from Food Nutrition Department.

Key information: The whole dairy education is 4 or 4.5 years. Students have to collect 127 credit hours per 4 or 4.5 years and start with 3 years of basic study and then they major in a specialised field.

The criteria is over 450 scores for Entrance Examination. Focus points is Physics and Maths.

The school has 4 semesters of English teaching and 1 semester for professional English teaching.

1 year of academic study is around 2 million MNT.

Dormitory is available for freshmen students as priority- 550.000MNT per year.

Health insurance costs around 10.000MNT per year.

They can provide government scholarship opportunities. Ca. 72.000MNT per month.

Doctor Soninkhishig would like to develop a collective research study on traditional Mongolian dairy products and to develop methods for processing traditional dairy products.

From left: Karl Simonsen, Doctor Soninkhishig, Peter Ulrich and Chalotte Vad








From left: Doctor Soninkhishig, Peter Ulrich, Shuree Sukhbaatar, Karl Simonsen and Joanna Ryter



















5th July, Ulaanbaatar

10:00 am Meeting with Global Communities

Mrs. Tuul Tuvshinbayar, Program Manager for Global Communities

Enkhtuya Boldbaatar, Program Dairy Specialist

Key information: GC is manly working in: Ulaanbaatar, Tuv, Selenge and Darkhan-Uul provinces. These provinces are the major beneficiaries. GC has extended their program to the Khatgal area with additional USAID funding until September 2018 as a result of the cooperation with KDP and SSKh.

From the previous experience of GC, cooperative development initiative needs much consulting and training for capacity building in order to become successful, GC estimate a 3 year period of training for Sarlagiin Saikhan Khishig (SSKh) Cooperative. CG provided the KDP team with training details and budget for the 3 year training period. GC would also like to cover Alag-Erdene soum (a village near Khatgal) under the cooperative development funding. Mrs. Tuul encourage to involved as many herders from the Khatgal community in SSKh as possible. SSKh cooperative should grow to (20-30 members, 40-50 herders).

GC would like to invite members from SSkh to on-site visit to GC dairy cooperatives in Tuv and Selenge aimags, to share experiences.

From left: Karl Simonsen, Peter Ulrich, Joanna Ryter, Tuul Tuvshinbayar, Enkhtuya Boldbaatar, Shuree Sukhbaatar and Nurjan Khavdselem














14:00 pm Meeting with National Dairy development board of Mongolia

Mr. Monhjargal. B, Executive director/National coordinator

Key information:

Board strives to:

  • Mongolian milk collection process to be restored
  • Fodder plan re-established.
  • Value added business development in which the regional features are inclusive.

There is lack of system to prepare dairy professionals in rural communities.
Since 2000 there is no dairy technologist education, only food industry engineers.
A estimate of 93 Equipment engineers is educated a yearly.

Until 1990s (under the communist period) Mongolia had well functional dairy farms and dairy facilities. Approximate 400-800 cattle pr. farm
The milk yield was on average 22-23 l per cattle. The cattle had stables and feed. Milking cattle was imported. From 1990-2008,no dairy cattle were imported.
Hybridized cattle have been reduced as there is no breeding programmes. Herders are not using a breeding system for to increase milk yield and high productivity.
Several small and big Danida projects was implemented in 1994-2005, but all are now non functional.
With the declined communist system, the whole dairy sector has collapsed.

Mr. Monhjargal highly appreciates the KDP initiative and NNDB are ready to partner.

From left: Shuree Sukhbaatar, Peter Ulrich, Chalotte Vad, Mr. Monhjargal and Karl Simonsen













6th July, Ulaanbaatar

14:00 pm Meeting with JICA /Japanese International Cooperation Agency

Arai Junichi, Research officer for Agricultural Sector

Information on the development programs and strategies conducted by the organization. A very informative and positive meeting.

Key information: JICA does not have prospect for any activities or programmes in Khovsgol Province for the time being. They plan to develop support for projects in 2017-18.


7th July, Ulaanbaatar – Mürün

Domestic flight Ulaanbaatar to Mörön, the province capital of Khovsgol aimag. From Mörön there is a 100 km drive by car to Khatgal village.

From left: Karl Simonsen, Chalotte Vad and Peter Ulrich













8th July, Khatgal

Meeting with board members of Sarlagiin Saikhan Khishig Cooperative

Meeting with cooperative leaders Ankhmandah and Dalaimyagmar from Sarlagiin Saikhan Khishig and Tuul Tuvshinbayar and Enkhtuya Boldbaatar from Global Communities. We were discussing the work and strategy for the cooperative.














Meeting with Integrated Livelihoods Improvement and Sustainable Tourism Project in Khuvsgul Lake National Park

Mrs Erdenejargal, Project Manager

Mrs Erdenejargal informed on the work of the organisation and possibilities for SSKh to apply for funding for their activities.


9th July, Khatgal

Field trip and board member meeting

Field trip to board member Daliaimyagmar´s camp out in the countryside. She showed us the milking procedure and how she is making Öröm (double cream), Tarag (yoghurt), Byaslag (fresh cheese), Shar Tos (Clarified butter) and Aarul (dried curd).

Dalaimyagmar milking a yak















Dalaimyagmar conducting the traditional Mongolian milk blessing ritual spraying fresh milk to the four directions
Filtering and boiling the fresh milk
























After boiling the milk some yoghurt culture is added. This causes the milk to coagulate and the fresh cheese is filtered and pressed.















Dalaimyagmars dairy products. From left: Salty milk tea, Aaruul, Öröm and the freshly made cheese















Fresh yoghurt







































In the afternoon Sarlagiin Saikhan Khishig held a board meeting with the participation of Tuul Tuvshinbayar from GC and the KDP team. The board had been rather inactive during the spring and they had many important topics on the agenda. It was decided to hire a local external consultant Khukhii who will monitor and give advice to Sarlagiin Saikhan Khishig. She will report back to GC and KDP on a monthly basis.
Global community provides a transparent e-balance system to the cooperative, so that every member can have an access to how asset is administered. Also providing the access to KDP for monitoring purpose of the cooperative progress.

Board meeting














11-12th July, Khatgal

Naadam Festival

SSKh participated in the annual Naadam Festival. KDP invested in a Mongolian tent to display and sell SSKh dairy products. Information folders was handed out to the local community with a invitation to join SSKh cooperative and a all member meeting 14th July.

SSKh cooperative new tent















Peter Ulrich in front of KDP banner and information folder















Tastings and sale of dairy products





































Mongolian horse race with children as jockeys














14th July, Khatgal

Morning meeting

Interviews with 5 selected candidates with the purpose to select two persons to go and study at MUST, Mongolian University of Science and Technology, School of Food Industrial technology in Ulaanbaatar paid by KDP.

18 young persons from Khatgal applied for for the KDP education programme.
The two students will be trained as Dairy Technicians and will work as future staff at the KDP dairy facility when completed.



All member meeting with Sarlagiin Saikhan Khishig Cooperative

14 women and 2 men participated. 3 herders signed as new members.

Many different topics were discussed. As strategies for SSKh both short and long term. Approach to tourist camps in the Khatgal area for making deals of supplying the camps with SSKh dairy products.

SSKh participation in the Yak festival in Alag-Erdene on 20th July.













1st August, Toilogt Turist Camp

Dairy event and meeting with Sarlagiin Saikhan Khishig Cooperative

Members of SSKh held a dairy event in Toilogt, one of the major tourist camps by the shore of Khovsgol lake. The members showed how to make several traditional Mongolian dairy products like Sarlagiin suunii nermel arhi (Yak vodka), Byaslag (fresh cheese) and Halison tos (a dish made of melted cream with flour, sugar and raisins).

The visitors of the camp could follow the whole product process and ask questions and have tastings of the freshly made products.

SSKh also brought many additional freshly made dairy products and handicraft for sale.

One of the members also brought her athlete yak bull, this year winner of the yak race in Aslag-Erdenet, so the tourist could try to ride a fierce yak.

Chalotte Vad explained about the Khovsgol Dairy Project to the visitors and presented some of the members of the cooperative and the training programme of two local girls.

Members of SSKh selling their products. They are also making Khuushuur (deep fried dumpling) filled with Byaslag (fresh cheese) with wild onions. Fried in Shar tos (yellow butter)
Gankhuyag frying delicious Khuushuur
Traditional handcrafts
The visitors in the camp was all attending the Mongolia Sunrise to Sunset 42/100 km ultra trail Marathon
Old yoghurt boiling. After the vodka production the yoghurt will be used to make Aarul (dried curd). Nothing gets wasted in Mongolia
Replacing the cold water. Yak vodka production: Old yoghurt is heated in the big pot on the stove. A big cylinder is placed in the pot. A small pot is hanged inside this cylinder. Another pot is placed on top of the cylinder and filled with cold water. When the yoghurt warms up the alcohol will evaporate and rise up. When it hits the bottom of the pot with the cold water it condense and drip into the small pot suspended underneath. A very simple way of alcohol production
Holison tos: Double cream is heated. When melted flour is added slowly, yellow butter is produced and removed. Sugar is added and the dish is ready
The yak bull was brought on a truck
Zvonimir Grobenski the brave riding the yak