RDP project database
Establishing Producer Group "Gazdowie" for Small-scale Livestock Farmers
The creation of the Gazdowie producer group brought together small producers from the Carpathian region. This helped preserve traditional livestock production methods and created more awareness of traditional dairy and meat products in the region
Situated in the South of Poland, the Carpathian region has always been rich in traditional small farms specialising in sheep grazing and meat and dairy production. With the increasing competitiveness of the agricultural market the farmers in the region felt a need to join forces in order to protect their heritage and maintain small farm-holders profitability.
A producer group was established with the aim of preserving traditional sheep grazing and food production in the Carpathian micro regions. It was also intended to strengthen the competitiveness of the small producers that otherwise would be at risk of losing the profitability and sustainability of their activities.
The producer group functions as a cooperative made up of about 120 producers. It utilises 121 ha of agricultural land directly, and an additional 1,000 hectares for grazing sheep and lambs, used as a base for export production. In addition to directly supporting agricultural production, the group’s activities focused on joint activities aimed at price negotiations, promotion and advertising. Investments into farm holdings were also carried out, such as the construction of a sheep slaughterhouse.
Results & Benefits
Establishing a producer group helped the farmers to further specialise in manufacturing various sheep products. In addition, the traditional method of production (including using the ‘highland hut’) has been preserved for the following dairy products: oscypki, redykołki, sheep cheese, bundz, Wallachia cheese, gołki and gazdowski cheese. The activities of the group have reinforced small producers' economic sustainability and improved visibility of their products.
The idea of creating a producer group was successful. Nevertheless, there were obstacles encountered during its set up and subsequent operation - mostly of a legal nature. Those involved felt that the law does not sufficiently reflect the specificity of small farms in the Carpathian region. In addition, widely dispersed small farms lack the financial capacity that is necessary for investments and this project has shown how working together can be beneficial to all the individuals involved.
Project location and other information
Various microregions of Carpaths: Tatra, Podhale, Spisz, Pieniny, Żywieckie, Beskid Śląski
Total project cost (€)
EAFRD contribution (€)
National contribution (€)
Languages for contact
At a glance
Final beneficiary type
Individual farmers, Producer groups
€100 000 - €500 000
Theme / Measure:
Competitiveness of Agriculture & Forestry
142. Producer groups
Cheese, Sheep, Cooperation, Livestock husbandry, Mountain area