Fikrat is a 45-year-old man on a pension. He is married with three children. He breeds cattle and sells them for meat purposes to local butchers right from his home. He has more than 10 years of experience in this field, thanks to his father who taught him the best way to look after cattle.
He usually buys small cattle, raises and fattens them in 5-6 months, and then sells them for a profitable price in the local livestock bazaar. Meat selling brings about 120 AZN income per month. People use beef in everyday national dishes like pilau and dolma and always use yoghurt sauce.
This is the only financial income in his family and is not enough to cover the basic needs of his beloved children. He applied for 1,000 AZN to purchase three baby calves.
Aqroinvest Credit Union was founded by a group of 32 Imishli farmers in 2001, and has grown to become one of the largest credit unions in Azerbaijan. It boasts a portfolio of nearly $5 million and is wholly owned by its more than 3,500 borrowers, as of December 2011.