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The Federal Government and African Union Launch an Initiative to Address Livestock Feed Shortages

The Federal Government of Nigeria and the African Union-Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources Resilient African Feed and Fodder Systems (RAFFS) Project have established a multi-stakeholder platform aimed at ensuring livestock producers have access to high-quality animal feed at competitive prices.

According to a statement from the Ministry of State for Agriculture and Food Security, the RAFFS Project is an initiative designed to mitigate the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, and the Russia-Ukraine conflict on African feed and fodder systems. The project seeks to analyse the effects of these crises and provide evidence-based, short-term solutions to enhance resilience in the sector.

The Honourable Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Security, Aliyu Abdullahi, described the launch of the multi-stakeholder platform as a strategic move aligned with the government’s commitment to sustainable food production and national food security. He stated that the platform would not only facilitate access to feed for producers but would also create an integrated self-sufficiency system that promotes fair competition among suppliers.

Abdullahi emphasised the crucial role of supporting the livestock industry in increasing self-sufficiency in animal products. He noted that the implementation of this initiative would ensure proper nutrition, promote sustainable practices, and empower livestock producers as an integral component of the national food security system.

Meanwhile, Tunde Amole, Country Representative of the International Livestock Research Institute, highlighted Nigeria’s substantial expenditure on importing animal feed ingredients such as corn, soybeans, and wheat to meet domestic production demands. According to Amole, Nigeria imports millions of metric tonnes of animal feed and raw materials, primarily for the rearing of cattle, poultry, and pigs.

To address this challenge, Amole advocated for increased local sourcing of raw materials for animal feed production, mitigating supply concerns, and ensuring sustainable development. He also called for the expansion of farmland dedicated to intensive grass- and animal-feed production.

Lack of feed and fodder in recent years has resulted in significant livestock losses, diminished livelihoods, and rising costs of vital livestock-sourced foods.

Through the RAFFS Project, the Federal Government and the African Union aim to strengthen the knowledge and analytical ecosystem, identify innovative business models, engage more women, improve policy engagement, and foster partnerships for coordinated action to address immediate challenges in the livestock feed sector.


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