Livestock Development Strategy for Africa 2015–35
The “Livestock Development Strategy for Africa (LiDeSA) 2015–2035” (2015, 158pp), published by the African Union Interafrican Bureau for Animal Resources (AU–IBAR), seeks to transform the African livestock sector for accelerated and equitable growth. According to observed trends, demand for livestock and livestock products in Africa is expected to increase up to 8-fold by 2050, especially because of the growing human urban population and rising incomes. One section of the paper analyses the situation in Eastern Africa, which is projected to be self-sufficient in animal-source foods by 2050. It is pointed out that, because livestock production in this region is predominantly extensive, depending on natural grazing with minimal external inputs, the livestock products are also potentially fit for the organic market.
The strategy paper acknowledges the innovation in the pastoral sector through use of ICT and mobile money, which has improved how livestock markets function. It draws upon the AU policy framework on pastoralism and highlights the importance of maintaining livestock mobility and community-managed grazing. It also gives attention to the situation of pastoral youth, on the one hand becoming entrepreneurs in the livestock sector and on the other hand diversifying out of the sector.
The strategic approach laid out in the paper includes:
- Significant public and private sector investments with associated supportive policy environment;
- Encouraging governments to create appropriate enabling investment environments, thus reducing the cost of conducting business and minimising risks in the livestock sector;
- Gradual intensification and commercialisation of the largely extensive livestock production systems in the drylands and transition from subsistence to market economy by smallholders in mixed crop-livestock farming;
- Dissemination and application of new available technologies, knowledge and skills and increased investment in research and development;
- Value chain approach;
- Fostering mind-set change by challenging existing narratives and value paradigms.