Indigenous Beverage Production and Economic Empowerment of Rural Women in Rwanda

  • Chika Ezeanya-Esiobu University of Rwanda
  • Vedaste Ndungutse University of Rwanda College of Agriculture, Animal Sciences and Veterinary Medicine
  • Salomon Nshimyimana University of Rwanda College of Business and Economics
Keywords: Indigenous Beverages, Rural Women, Economic Empowerment, Rwanda, African Development


Across sub-Saharan Africa, indigenous non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages are produced from locally available materials such as cereals, fresh milk, fruits, and vegetables. Women are usually the custodians of the indigenous technology needed to produce indigenous beverages. If properly harnessed, indigenous beverage production can grant rural women the economic power needed to enable them to realize their potential. This paper examines four beverages in Rwanda produced with the use of indigenous technology. The study looks at how the indigenous technology-based production of beverages created from banana and sorghum contributes to increased income and enhanced access for rural women. It also explores trends, challenges, and opportunities in improving the economic situation of rural women who are engaged in such business in Rwanda. The aim is to determine the contribution of this sector to the economic empowerment of rural women and how existing institutions and practices impede or create conditions for further advancement.


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Peer Reviewed