Zoedue – Fermented Cheese Made By The Brokpas Of Sakteng Sees Increasing Demand

Email

Zoedue has become a lucrative business in Sakteng ever since motor-road accessibility improved.

(Source: Sherab Tenzin)

 

By Kinley Yonten Business Bhutan

For the last three years, Ap Dorji Drukpa, 61, has been following the same routine every week. He puts fresh cheese into leather bags and leaves them beside the bukhari to ferment.

“It takes one or two months to ferment the cheese but the longer it is kept the better it tastes. Moreover, the longer the fermentation, the higher the medicinal value of the zoedue,” he claimed.

Zoedue (fermented cheese) has become a lucrative business in the remote district of Sakteng ever since motor-road accessibility improved.

In fact Ap Dorji Drukpa and others from the Brokpa tribe in Sakteng are not able to produce enough zoedue to meet market demand.

Benefits of selling zoedue for the Brokpas of Sakteng

The Brokpas in Sakteng got involved in commercialising yak products four years ago. The business started off on a small scale with products such as butter, cheese and zoedoe on offer.

 

Source: Youtube/AsiaHarvest

 

Today, a sizeable number of villagers are engaged in the production of zoedoe and they are making good money out of it. 

A kilogram of zoedue costs Nu 500-600 in Sakteng but when they sell it in Trashigang, it costs Nu 800-900 per kg.

He added that four years ago they could barely sell one or two packs of zoedoe. However the situation improved when new motor roads were constructed.

“It has been a lucrative business because we have access to motor road now,” Ap Dorji Drukpa said.

The villagers have also formed a group to sell zoedue in other dzongkhags (districts) in Bhutan.

“We are not able to meet the demand of zoedue now,” he said.

Another Brokpa, Tshering Om, said producing yak products has proven to be a lucrative business.

“A decade ago, during summer we bartered products with grains, vegetables, salt and other necessary items but now, with road accessibility we can do business on our own.”

 

Photo: AJ Heath

 

She added that now even youths are also taking interest in the business. “The road has made it easier to do business,” she explained.

Increasing the production of zoedue to meet demands

A medical team at Sakteng from the Basic Health Unit trained the villagers to make products and store them hygienically. To keep the business afloat for all times to come, the gewog (village) administration is helping villagers to seek loan from banks.

Currently, villagers are occupied in making zoedue and other products which are worth Nu 50,000 – 70,000 for the upcoming Eastern festivals in Bhutan.

According to Mangmi, Lhuendrup, the gewog has distributed machines to churn the milk and even containers for storage. 

“Awareness has been created to keep their products hygienic and which will be able to help the villagers to sell their products in Arunachal Pradesh,”

Currently, around 70% of the Sakteng residents still graze yaks and cows to make their living. To expand their business, around 115 households in Sakteng have even sold some of their yaks to buy boleros so that they could transport their products to other dzongkhags.

 

This article first appeared in Business Bhutan and has been edited for Daily Bhutan.

 

 


Related Posts

Plans In The Pipeline To Set Up More Homestays In Sakteng,...

We are hopeful that our homestay business in Sakteng will boom with the increase in the number of tourists."

Oct 12, 2019 12:43

Advocating For A Central School For The Sakteng Community In...

Mangmi Lhendrup said that without boarding facilities, small children were left without care and guidance from their...

Jun 16, 2019 23:58

Observing World Health Day in the Highlands of Merak and Sakteng

“Bhutan provides free health services to its people and by expanding the services to remote areas like Merak, it shows...

Apr 12, 2018 00:20

Sakteng Wildlife Sanctuary To Adopt Climate Vulnerability...

The project will involve climate change vulnerability assessment of terrestrial and aquatic life, and communities in SWS...

Aug 07, 2017 13:28

Savour Bhutan's Ema Datshi Cheese Well-Received In Local Market,...

It has been observed that during the trial period, the demand was high for Savour Bhutan's Ema Datshi cheese.

May 02, 2019 23:56

Smoked Gouda Cheese And Other Premium Dairy Products In The...

Koufuku International aims to produce premium dairy products which is of export quality.

May 25, 2018 08:53

Latest

News

What are the endangered birds of Bhutan?

Bhutan is home to 26 endangered birds. One of these birds even has its own festival.

Jul 19, 2021 10:35

Removing Bhutan’s import taxes on sanitary products is crucial for period equity

What might elimination of the 30 percent import tax on sanitary supplies mean for Bhutanese citizens?

Jul 12, 2021 10:48

Features

Biography of Pema Lingpa, Bhutan's famous treasure revealer

Once, he uncovered treasure following instructions from a dream. He would go on to uncover thirty-two treasures during his lifetime.

Aug 02, 2021 10:52

What are the endangered mammals of Bhutan?

Currently, Bhutan is home to nine endangered mammals, with one being critically endangered.

Jul 23, 2021 16:30

Business

What are the entrepreneurship programmes and initiatives available in Bhutan?

The Bhutanese government has introduced all kinds of initiatives to promote entrepreneurship. Even school kids are groomed to innovate,...

Jun 22, 2021 16:37

Support authentic Bhutanese handicrafts by local artisans

Whether you are interested in artisanal Bhutanese handicrafts or boutique sourced products with contemporary touch, the incredible...

Mar 25, 2021 12:09

Sports

Bhutan competed in the Olympics through historic qualification

Since 1984, Bhutan has been competing in the Olympics via universality invitation, but not the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

Jul 29, 2021 17:06

What are the traditional sports of Bhutan?

The Bhutanese have a variety of traditional sports. Some test your aim and skills, whereas with others, it’s about pure brute strength.

Jul 13, 2021 11:15

Travel

Travel to Bhutan: experience the charm of Paro district

Paro district receives the highest volume of travellers annually. It's also easily one of tourists favourite places in Bhutan.

Jul 14, 2021 11:20

Travel to Bhutan: attractions in the capital of Bhutan, Thimphu

Western Bhutan is the perfect region to learn more about the beautiful kingdom for those who are visiting Bhutan for the first time.

Jun 29, 2021 12:58

Lifestyle

How to identify female or male Bhutanese names?

Organizational Psychologist Joyce E. A. Russell observed, “A person’s name is the greatest connection to their own identity and...

Jul 09, 2021 13:19

Where to satisfy your momo cravings in Thimphu, Bhutan

You can't go wrong with momo. It's almost always the answer to a growling stomach and social events.

Jun 28, 2021 11:20

COVID-19

Bhutan is leading in the vaccination race

“Bhutan is now a beacon of hope for the region, at a time when the COVID-19 pandemic has upended lives and devastated families." - Dr Will...

Jul 28, 2021 12:01

Bhutan, with a leading vaccination rate in the region, commenced its second vaccination drive

Bhutan's second nationwide vaccination campaign will be held from July 20 - July 26, 2021.

Jul 21, 2021 11:05

Subscribe to our newsletter

Never miss out on new happenings and news stories!

Download Daily Bhutan Mobile App

Connecting with us just got easier!