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FAO reiterates continued support to African livestock sector

ADDIS ABABA Ethiopia (Xinhua) -- The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has reiterated that it would continue supporting Africa’s livestock sector.

Speaking at a workshop that launched a project dubbed Africa Sustainable Livestock 2050 (ASL2050), Patrick Kormawa, FAO Sub-regional Coordinator for Eastern Africa, noted that Livestock, which is one of the fastest growing agricultural sectors in Africa, is a major component of FAO’s program on the continent.

In partnership with U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and six African countries, FAO on Thursday launched the ASL2050 project towards sustainable and productive livestock in Africa. 

Kormawa, who is also FAO Representative to the AU and UNECA, has noted that FAO works in Africa based on Africa’s priorities and commitments, such as the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) and the Malabo declaration, as well as by country priorities.

Reiterating that livestock is a major component of FAO’s program in Africa, Kormawa has expressed FAO’s continued support to African projects and programmes in the sector towards sustainable and productive livestock on the continent.

According to data from the FAO Global Perspective Studies Unit, it is estimated that by 2050, the meat market will be 34.8 million tones and the milk market is projected at 82.6 million tones, an increase of 145 and 155 percent respectively over 2005-07 levels, noted the official.

Over this period, Africa’s increase in volume of meat consumed will be on a par with that of the developed world and that of Latin America, with only South and Southeast Asia anticipated to have higher growth, according to Kormawa. 

“In this respect, policy and institutional reforms should be developed, building on solid data and evidence based analysis, to ensure that the opportunities generated by the growing market for animal-sourced foods translates into widespread benefits for the populace, including livestock producers, other actors along value chains, as well as for consumers,” he said.

“This is challenging because of the heterogeneity and complexity of the livestock sector and, in particular, because of the negative effects that the livestock sector can have on society, notably through zoonotic diseases; contaminated animal source foods; pollution of soil, water and air; and loss of biodiversity,” he added.

Hailing the newly launched ASL2050 project in addressing the complexities in Africa’s livestock sector, the official said FAO would make every effort to support the smooth and effective implementation of the project towards benefiting the entire Africa continent.

“The project (ASL2050) allows us to take a long term perspective on livestock development; it allows us to identify major challenges as well as opportunities associated with the long-term development of livestock; it allows us to identify priority actions, policies and investments needed now, to ensuring healthy and sustainable livestock systems in the future,” he noted.



Project launched towards sustainable livestock in Africa

ADDIS ABABA Ethiopia (Xinhua) -- A project towards sustainable and productive livestock in Africa is launched on Thursday, by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in partnership with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and six African countries.

The project, dubbed Africa Sustainable Livestock 2050 (ASL2050), aims to facilitate dialogue, knowledge sharing and consultation among livestock, health and environment stakeholders in order to identify opportunities and threats associated with the long-term development of livestock.

It also aims to agree upon priority reforms and investments to create the capacity needed to ensure a sustainable development of the livestock sector in the next three or four decades.

ASL2050 includes six African governments: Burkina Faso, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria and Uganda, which are anticipated to experience major expansion and intensification in their livestock systems in the coming decades, according to FAO.

ASL2050 aims to facilitate a dialogue between countries, ministries, and specialists to help Africa prepare for the changes, building the capacity to maximize benefits and minimize challenges.

The project will facilitate dialogue between livestock, environment, livelihoods and public ministries of the six African countries to identify actions that can be taken now to ensure sustainable and productive livestock sector while protecting the environment and public health.

Speaking at the launching ceremony in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa, Patrick Kormawa, FAO Sub-regional Coordinator for Eastern Africa, noted that FAO would make every effort to support the smooth and effective implementation of ASL2050.

“As the ASL2050 is a complex project which looks beyond current policies and programs, and requires inputs from multiple sectors, it will require a one-health approach that utilizes expertise from multiple disciplines,” said Kormawa, who is also FAO Representative to the AU and UNECA.

He stated that the presence of representatives from ministries responsible for livestock, health and environment, as well as FAO and other organizations indicates a clear intent for ASL2050 to build strong collaborative partnerships across sectors to support sustainable and healthy livestock systems for the countries.

“The FAO Regional Office for Africa based in Ghana, and the FAO Sub-regional Office for Eastern Africa, based in Addis Ababa, will make every effort to support the smooth and effective implementation of ASL2050, not only for the benefits of the countries present here today, but to draw on lessons learned from this program and to roll them out throughout the entire Africa continent,” he said.

Fekadu Beyene, Ethiopian Minister of Livestock and Fishery, said the project provides opportunity to share expertise and experiences between ministries and countries towards building a sustainable livestock sector in coming decades. 

“We are looking forward to partnering with USAID and FAO to examine our livestock systems now, and realize the potential they have for the future through the sustainable implementation of the (country’s) Livestock Master Plan,” said the minister.

As the African economy in the next 20 and 30 years is expected to continue to grow fast, meat, egg and diary consumption at household level will significantly increase on the continent, which in turn provides opportunity for the growth of livestock sector, but also poses challenges for public health and environmental protection, according to a joint release by FAO and USAID.

The demand for milk, meat and eggs is going to double, triple and even quadruple in some African countries, according to Leslie Reed, Director of USAID Ethiopia Mission.

“With ASL2050, we are going to collaborate with governments to work out how to build the foundations for this change, so that African farmers and consumers will be better off,” said Reed.

“More livestock means more feed is needed, and land use will change. This presents some challenges for the environment that we need to start preparing now,” she said.

It was noted on the occasion that ASL2050 will also anticipate long-term public health risks such as unexpected disease spread from livestock to humans, and identify policies or procedures to implement now that can reduce the risks in the future.



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