Policies for competitive smallholder livestock production
4 - 6 March 2015
Lansmore Hotel, Gaborone, Botswana

Table of Contents


The conference aims to provide an opportunity for African and international scientists and the broader stakeholder groups in the livestock production sector to discuss competitiveness in livestock production systems and improving the livelihoods of livestock farmers and other value chain actors, especially smallholder farmers, with emphasis on Southern Africa.

Specific objectives are to:
  • Discuss competitiveness in agricultural food production and marketing, and to shed light on the factors that influence competitiveness
  • To provide answers to questions and dialogue on key topics related to competitiveness of smallholder livestock, including market access, economics of animal health, role of collective action, government role provision of livestock support services, particularly to tease out policy implications.

Outputs of the meeting


Day 1 - Wednesday 4 March 2015
  • 08.00 Registration
  • 08.30
    • Welcome remarks and introduction of the objectives (Dr. Seleka, Executive Director – Botswana Institute for Development Policy Analysis)
    • Mr. Chris Munn, Chargé d´Affaires of the Australian High Commission (Pretoria)
  • 08.40 Introduction of participants and the agenda
  • 09.15 Theme 1: Measures of competitiveness in smallholder livestock production and policy advocacy (Chair: Dr. Davis Marumo)
    • Competitiveness of smallholder pig producers in rural Malawi: challenges and prospects for improvement. (Andy Safalaoh) - See storytelling notes below under theme 1 and see presentation (pictures).
    • Policy opportunities to enhance the role of smallholder livestock systems in the post-apartheid social reform efforts in the Limpopo province of South Africa (G.T Rootman) - See storytelling notes below under theme 1
    • Measurement of competitiveness in smallholder livestock production and policy advocacy (Bahta & Malope) - See presentation.
    • International Competitiveness of Botswana’s Beef Industry (Dr. Seleka) - See presentation.
    • Technical efficiency and technological gaps among smallholder beef farms in Botswana: a stochastic meta-frontier approach. (Bahta, Baker, Malope and Katijuongua) - See presentation.
  • 10.15 Coffee & tea break, group photo, Q&A
  • 10.40 Theme 1 (continued)
    • Meat processing and preservation technologies practiced in Kenya’s Pastoral areas with potential for improvement based on product competitiveness. (Josephat N.) - See presentation.
    • Measuring competitiveness of beef and sheep production on national and international level (Claus Deblitz / S. Bahta) - See presentation.
    • Social capital and livestock investments: Evidence from Masaka District, Uganda (Mawejje, J.) - This presenter was not around eventually.
  • 11.25 Q&A (buzz arou
  • nd the table and questions for the presenters)
  • 11.40 Group discussion on theme 1
  • 12.00 Welcome remarks
    • Dr. Seleka, Executive Director – Botswana Institute for Development Policy Analysis
    • Official Opening – Hon. Patrick Ralotsia – Acting Minister of Agriculture
    • Dr. Sikhalazo Dube, International Livestock research Institute (ILRI)
  • 12.40 Lunch break
  • 13.45 Theme 2: Economics of animal health and trade in the competitiveness of smallholder livestock production (chair: Dr. Hameed Nuru)
    • OIE's role in smallholder livestock production in the SADC region (M. Letshwenyo) - See presentation
    • Disease prevalence in smallholder livestock production system: a seroprevalenace survey in Botswana (Kawonga, Sergeant, Moagabo, Katjiuongua, Ntsesang & Kootshegetse et al.) - See presentation
    • The impact of training using a structured primary animal health care model on the skill of rural small scale farmers. (R. Moerane) - The presenter was not around
    • Regional Trade Opportunities for Botswana’s Livestock Sector (the small stock and beef sectors) (Maiketso & (Motswapong) - See presentation
    • Animal health cost and disease incidence at household level: case of smallholder livestock in Botswana (Katjiuongua, H) - See presentation
    • Creating networks for improved understanding of the epidemiology and socioeconomic impact of peste des petits ruminants in Southern Africa (Fischer, K.) - See storytelling notes below (under theme 2)
    • Comparison of Oestrus Synchronization response and pregnancy rate on village cows following timed artificial insemination in Kwazulu- Natal and Limpopo Provinces (Magashu, A) - See presentation and see storytelling notes below under theme 2.
  • 15.15 Coffee & tea break
  • 15.45 Group work on theme 2
  • 16.20 Wrap up of day 1 and close

Day 2 - Thursday 5 March 2015
  • 08.00 Theme 3: Market access, utilisation and food security (Chair: B. Masilo)
    • Key issues in Botswana poultry value chain: the case of Gaborone, Kgatleng, Kweneng and South East districts (Charity Masole) - See presentation
    • Analysis of marketing performance of the diary value chain in Tanga city, Tanzania. (Ibrahim A. Wikedzi) - See document and presentation (table with figures)
    • Unleashing maize-dairy integrated production synergistic potential for smallholder farming (D. Chiumia) - See presentation
    • Market access and utilization, M-Fodder: innovation from east Africa. (Elvis F Ouma) - See poster and see infographic
    • Demonstration of dairy technologies in Peri- urban areas of Nekemte, Bako and Gimbi towns, western Oromia, Ethiopia (Abera, H.) See presentation [this presentation was meant to happen on day 1 but the speaker could not arrive before and therefore presented his work under theme 3 although that was not the original intention]
  • 09.00 Q&A session with buzz on the table and speakers available in parallel
  • 09.15 Theme 3 (continued)
    • Feasibility analysis to trade boneless beef from Botswana to the Middle-East: A system dynamics approach (Kanar Hamza) - See presentation
    • An assessment of the beef cattle marketing in Benue State, Nigeria: Implication for investment in the beef cattle value chain (Abu, G.A.) - See storytelling notes below and see presentation (pictures)
    • Market access through one million Regressions: What do Ugandan dairy farmers say? (Pica-Ciamarra) - See presentation (by Nadhem Mtimet)
    • Characterization of Food Security and Consumption Patterns among Livestock Keepers in Botswana (Francis Wanyoike, Sirak Bahta) - See presentation
    • Transaction costs and institutional constraints to market participation by smallholder livestock farmers in Kweneng west, Botswana. (Kgosikoma, R.K) - See presentation
  • 10.15 Coffee & tea break and Q&A
  • 10.45 Feedback from presenters
  • 10.50 Group work and discussion on theme 3
  • 11.20 Theme 4: Role of collective action in enhancing competitiveness in smallholder livestock farmers (Chair: Hikuepi Katjiuongua)
    • Role of collective action in enhancing the competitiveness of smallholder livestock production in Botswana (Malope, Selelo and Bahta) - See storytelling notes below under theme 4
    • Role of collective action in enhancing the competitiveness of smallholder livestock production: case of Namibia (Tjimune, V.) - See presentation
    • Dairy business hubs as collective action in enhancing competitiveness of smallholder dairy farmers in Kenya. (Irungu, R.) - See presentation
  • 11.35 Q&A session with buzz on the table and speakers available in parallel
  • 11.45 Discussion and group work on theme 4
  • 12.15 Lunch break
  • 13.15 Farmers' reflections on our work
  • 13.25 Theme 5: Governments’ role in the provision of livestock support services (Chair: Dr. Mahabile)
    • Supporting small ruminant based livelihoods in India: key elements of a pro-poor policy framework. (Mehta) - See presentation (photos)
    • Smallholder cattle farmer's access to credit in Swaziland (Mamba, T) - See presentation
    • Smallholder livestock systems support: experiences from the National biogas program of Ethiopia (Alemayehu, T.) - See presentation
    • An assessment of the Feed Resources in the Beef Production systems of Botswana (Baleseng, L., Makgekgenene A., & Lukuyu, B.) - See presentation
    • Role of support services in enhancing competitiveness of smallholder livestock farmers (MacLloyd Banda) - See presentation
    • The Role of Government in the provision of livestock services: An examination of Livestock Advisory Centre (Malope, Mmopelwa and Bahta) - See presentation
    • Manure management policy (Ethiopia): Manure management policies: a supportive tool for saving the earth and improving livelihoods of smallholder farmers (Ndambi, A.) - See presentation
  • 14.55 Q&A session
  • 15.10 Discussion and group work on theme 4
  • 15.35 Coffee break
  • 16.00 Wrap up day two, synthesis
  • 17.15 Closing statements
  • 17.30 Close

Notes of the meeting

Theme 1

Storytelling by Andy Safalaoh
Challenges identified? Lack of technological ability and innovation capacity. Farmers don’t have the capacity to put innovation into practice. The capacity has to be connected to the demand.In big markets, farmers are not participating, so they’re defeating the purpose of innovation platforms. Farmers fail to provide quality, quantity, terms of suppliers etc. Weak market linkages. Several players are biased and don’t participate because there’s not benefit for them. Facilitation remains an issue. Take-home message: smallholder (SH) livestock farmers are unlikely to compete from unless relevant tec….This implies the need to embrace

Storytelling by Gerrit Rootman
Representing Limpopo province.
SH agric in ZA is tied up with history of apartheid etc. and colonial politics. Various attempts have been made at changing the situation since the democracy. 79% of the population lives in communal lands. 79% are considered to be poor. 70% of the poor live in communal systems, 70% live under the bread line and 50% depend on nature to survive.
With that background, you can understand the problem.
Broader policy frameworks since democratization (the ‘redistribution’ program) has started with the land reform program with 3 lakes (restitution, redistribution and rural development – which is taking a back seat to the others).
Looking at the Limpopo province, about 270 projects have been funded. Of those mostly funded vegs and pultry, few funded livestock.
Of the 14 livestock projects (mostly on fencing, water points etc.), the interesting thing was that the database mentioned they would be unsustainable etc.
But I argue that livestock production offers opportunities for social transformation and for policy change. Though people are poor, they possess more livestock than the commercial sector which is feared towards game and wildlife – so we need to import meat from Argentina, Botswana, Namivbia.
We import 900.000 goats, 200.000 sheep live from Naimbia.
My argument is that we have 90% of goats in the communal lands.
Why not more development so far? Cattle complex: the assumption is that SH livestock owners have an unrealistic desire to accumulate livestock for religious and cultural reasons – but my work disputes that on the basis that Sh livestock systems are too small, and the herd composition is sub-optimal, mortalities are too high, and offtake is very low
Implications: there are opportunities for these to develop. We need a mindset change but to be able to support SH livestock systems we need information about how it feeds into livelihood trajectories. It’s a complex system and we recommend more information

Theme 1 summary 1 20150305_152630.jpg

Theme 1 summary 1 20150305_152625.jpg

Overall summary theme 1

Three key indicators of competitiveness
  1. Productivity (Stocking rate, calving rate, birth rate, mortality rate)
  2. Efficiency (Cost of production, volume [output], No. of diseases and outbreaks)
  3. Profitability / financial performance (Profit margins, price levels, quality of product)
Key policy implications?
  • Capacity building
  • Participatory approach in policy formulation

Key policy implications

Group 1
  • Subsidies
    • Mostly given for beef and not much focused on small stock
    • Market same issue
    • Support to beef association while small stock not much power
    • Malawi: Subsidies more on crop than on livestock
    • Are subsidies impactful / sustainable? International perspective?
  • Institutions: recognize the complexity and have support systems
  • Policy to guide projects:
    • Capacity building
    • Exit strategy
    • Regional benchmark
    • Supporters vs. opponents will determine time
  • Policies impacting efficiency
  • Policy formulation usually government-driven --> Participatory approach (private sector, farmers, international experience) and other stakeholders
    • Role players should be capacitated for engagement
    • Recent national and global to be considered for policy formulation "visionary policy"
  • Policy implementation and enforcement
  • Policy to support young farmers (monitored / capacitated)
Group 2
  • Targeted policies, specifically for smallholders
  • Implementation!? inefficiency
  • Monitoring
  • Understanding of policies by smallholders for monitoring purposes
  • Use of technology to share information with farmers
  • Hands-on approach in policy implementation
  • Policy processes should include all stakeholders especially smallholder farmers
  • Policy processes should also look at value chains --> production through to markets
  • Policy implementation should be a private-public partnership of policy
  • Deregulation monopoly of BMC) sidelining of other sectors
Group 3:
  • Should guide the interventions - government should be part of interventions / mainstreaming
  • Creating enabling policies (e.g. power supply, infrastructures etc.)
  • Recognizing the production systems - evidence-based policies
  • Target specific policies to specific groups, promote horizontal integration
  • Education to farmers / capacity enhancement
  • Sustainability - are subsidies helping us/farmers to grow?
  • Operationalization of policies. Implementation. FENCING POLICY 1991 BOTSWANA
  • Conflict of policies eg. land issues, harmonization of policies
  • Regular policy review to match emerging trends

Indicators of competitiveness

Group 1:
  1. Productivity
    1. Farm level: stocking rate, breeding rate (e.g. calving rate, birth rate), mortality rate
  2. Efficiency
    1. Production --> feed conversion rate --> carcass quality
    2. No disease outbreak
    3. Exchange
      1. Time it takes to sell
      2. Other transaction costs
      3. Cost of production
      4. Output (volume)
  3. Financial performance
    1. Profit / margins
    2. Price level (input/output)
    3. Timeliness (supply volumes / delivery)
Group 2:
  1. Market access
  2. Efficient and sustainable production
  3. Quality of products produced

Theme 2: Economics of animal health and trade

Storytelling by Klara Fischer and Jonas Wensman, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
Creating networks for improved understanding of the epidemiology and socioeconomic impact of peste des petits ruminants (PPR) in southern Africa

We are presenting the start of a research collaboration between Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Botswana College of Agriculture, Botswana National Veterinary Laboratory (BNVL), Botswana Vaccine Institute (BVI), Sokoine University of Agriculture (Tanzania), CIRAD (France) and National Veterinary Institute (SVA; Sweden) on the epidemiology and socioeconomic impacts of peste des petits ruminants (PPR).

'Peste des petits ruminants' (PPR) is a serious threat to livestock and it is actively spreading in Southern Africa, currently in Southern Tanzania, bordering Mozambique and Zambia and there is a high risk of expanding despite presence of good diagnostic tools and vaccines.
This network is linking to other projects in the region; one project in Tanzania and Pakistan funded by the Swedish Research Council, in which one Swedish PhD student and one PhD student registered in Tanzania are working. The other is an EU-funded project including CIRAD and SVA as partners. Activities are currently ongoing in both these projects.
This grant from the Swedish Research Council is about extending the network to Botswana. The idea is to bring together a multidisciplinary team of veterinary and social scientists.
This project contains 4 work packages. One looks at the evaluation of the use of filter papers to help with diagnosing PPR. It is currently used quite widely for molecular diagnostics, but we will evaluate filter paper for serology. We will have a training course for diagnostics at CIRAD in September 2015. Another work package will assess the potential role of African buffalo as a sentinel species for PPR by screening already available serum samples stored at the OIE reference lab at BVI.
WP 3 focuses on analysing the role of small ruminants for smallholders’ livelihoods in targeted area. This will serve as important baseline information for assessing the socioeconomic impact of PPR. WP4 develops a risk assessment of PPR. A social science master student will map informal and illegal livestock movements in selected border regions of the north of Botswana. The information gained will then be complemented with data on wildlife migrations and legal trade of animals and animal products. An MSc-student in epidemiology should then perform a risk analysis study, using this data on animal movements and applying a risk assessment approach to measure the risk of introduction of different model diseases, e.g. FMD, bovine TB and PPR.

Storytelling by Ayanda Magashu
Artificial insemination and oestrus synchronization: we trained farmers on this and we started with willing farmers.
Signs of eostrus: 43% of them happens when farmers are sleeping.
Farmers trainerd on herd health etc. Animals were screened for good conditions etc. and we included a device and asked the farmers to monitor that. We chose the goody bulls. We tried to group what we found.
Breed types clustered according to body conditions etc. and pregnancy rate showed that village cows responded successfully to oestrus synchronization etc.
Theme 2 summary 20150306_164809.jpg

Overall summary theme 2

  • Capacity of government veterinary services is not sufficient and inadequate to provide all vet services:
    • Personnel
    • Transport
    • Finance
    • Diagnostic capacity
    • Solution: animal health is a shared responsibility between farmers - government - private sector: promote regional networking
      • Alternative supply chain mechanisms for drugs and vaccines
      • Government to strengthen its public role:
        • Anti stock theft
        • Control vaccines and drugs
        • Research
        • Policy development
        • Alternative funding for research and development
  • Capacity of farmers to take responsibility for livestock is low:
    • Herdboy system
    • Poor record keeping
    • Little handling + control of animals: wild + strays
    • Weekend farming / absentee owner
    • Low knowledge and awareness
    • Solution:
      • Form smallholder clusters. They contract private vet, who also trains and advises
      • Training + extension materials + information channels developed (social media)
  • Marketing: heavy hand of government, little diversification
    • Solution:
      • Smart marketing - branding ready to cook (ex: Namibia)
      • Promote regional trade as alternative to EU-export
      • Government withdraws but works on enabling environment: inform about standards

What's needed in economics of animal health and trade to improve smallholder livestock competitiveness

  • Shared responsibility between government farmers and private sector for animal health
    • Cost sharing
    • Capacity building
    • Government control on the quality of drugs
  • SMART marketing of beef and other meat products
    • Specific
    • Measurable
    • Attainable
    • Realistic
    • Timely
  • Enabling and informed trade environment for beef and other meat
  • Policy put in place for regional trading of beef

What are major constraints to delivery of animal health services to smallholder producers?

Group 1:
  • No. of veterinary personnel
    • Workload of veterinary personnel
    • Transport (mobility)
    • Lack of infrastructure (roads)
    • Capacity to pay for (private/government) services
    • Lack of diagnostic facilities (laboratories)
    • Accessibility to vaccines / medicines
    • Absentee farmers --> poor management
    • Lack of farmer awareness (of animal health problems)
    • Appropriateness of packaging of vaccines for smallholders
  • Solutions
    • Repackage services (combining preventive + curative & extension (management)
    • Setting up supply chain of vaccines. Newcastle disease. Also thermostable vaccines developed (India)
    • Extension materials for educating farmers for animal health management practices
Group 2:
  • Absenteeism by farmers which leads to communication breakdown between farmers and vets
  • Most farmers are employed therefore this leads to absenteeism
  • Poor infrastructure so farmers and extension workers find it difficult to travel and gather or attend meetings
  • System of rearing which leads to unavailability of animals (handling of animals)
  • Record keeping by farmers
  • Unavailability of drugs. Vaccines are sold only when the vet officer is present
  • Drugs in the private companies are expensive hence farmers cannot purchase them
  • Smallholder farmers are not reached by vet officers mainly because they cannot afford the drugs
  • No motivation to vet. workers by farmers
  • Lack of transport for vet. officers to attend farmers' problems

Key policy implications of economic of animal health and trade?
  • Introduction of selected smallholder clusters
  • Disease control (parasites) / theft / reduction of stray animals / control breeding
  • Improvement of information dissemination on animal diseases and policies to smallholder farmers
  • Improve livestock productivity for smallholder farmers

Feedback from the day 1 synthesis exercise (1-2-4-all)

  • 2 things stood out: the communal system (cattle or sheep/goat) - animals can go out etc. In India a smallholder might have cattle and goats etc. and they all go out in the morning and come back in the afternoon. I was trying to understand the system. Health services will have a different dimension e.g. animals are away for so long so that has some impact.
  • In India we didn't do any study on technical efficiency, contrary to the work that was presented here - it would be good to work on this in India.
  • I was moved by the OIE standards which for me as a smallholder was the first time to be aware of this. How many of us are aware of these standards? Sthg could be done to make farmers aware of these standards. A lot has to be done to empower them.
  • The issue of technology and computer literacy: how many of us (SH farmers) can access this? We are not trained for some of these technologies etc. I hope that researchers will make these recommendations etc. and follow up that things have been done and that farmers are aware of this.
  • I was happy to hear that we can get artificial insemination...
  • We are doing vaccinations every day but animals are having some problems - we have to check what type of disease we're talking about so we know what type of vaccinations is important.
  • I want to say that for the first time I see a group of high level researchers sitting and discussing 'how do we translate what we are working on to smallholder farmers (who are sitting in farms with small infrastructures so that even vaccines cannot be put in action properly). We should request that basic infrastructures should be improved so that farmers access these services. In Europe any place is a good as the other.
  • Are we researchers visionaries? If I look in the house I see people that in 20 years will still be here. The research we are doing is about smallholder livestock farmers - but who will be disseminating the information that we have today? Are we sure it will reach young farmers, who will feed the people tomorrow.

Day 2

Theme 3: Market access, utilization and food security

Storytelling by G. Abu
Nigeria cannot compete with some of the better established countries when it comes to standards. Supply side / production.
The beef market: People don’t know where the beef meat is going.
The supply is not responding to the demand so people are slaughtering donkeys and pretending it is beef – product adulteration.
Transportation: where this beef is produced is very far away from where it is slaughtered. Transportation to the market happens via e.g. motorbike.
The abattoirs are not compliant with national standards, let alone EU ones.
Lack of access to facilities etc. A lot of pregnant cows have been slaughtered.
Farmers need to cut down on costs etc. but they are using water that is not appropriate.
Our marketing is not efficient and consequently people are not getting a good price.
Theme 3 summary 20150305_152601.jpg

Overall summary theme 3

  1. Constraints
    • Inefficient service delivery
    • Information asymmetry
  2. Opportunities
    • Formalised supply control
    • Use of technology in dissemination of information
    • Infrastructure development
    • Improved transport logistics
  3. Policy implications
    • Further research on hydroponics
    • Government should facilitate market access (infrastructure development)
    • Capacity building for smallholders
    • Market feedbank
    • Access to credit

Key policy implications

Group 1:
  • Good infrastructure (roads network, shelter, transport and telecommunication)
  • Access to market information (quality requirements, price, demand & supply)
  • Technical expertise of production system (products)
  • Availability of credit system
  • Market feedback
Group 2:
  • There is need for further research on hydroponics and other new technology for feed production
  • The government should facilitated market access by smallholder farmers
  • Capacity building for smallholder farmers

What's needed in market access utilisation and food security to improve smallholder livestock competitiveness?

  • Constraints (service delivery is inefficient)
  • Vet police / tribal admin?
    • The people are committed to their everyday duties so they never have time
  • Other countries' experience
  • Namibia - fan meat certification
  • Benchmarking of L ITS (???)
  • Paraguay - ?? income
    • Government centralised system
    • Household declaration of animals for vaccination and other things
    • Barcode system
  • Solutions bots
  • The system should be centralised
  • Farmers used to inject cattle with dettol
  • Pricing is not standardised
  • Retailers set price without consulting farmers
  • Information is not readily available

Top 3 opportunities to improve access to markets

Group 1:
  1. Formalised supply contract
    • Shorten supply chain
    • Improves bargaining power
  2. Strengthened collective action
    • Reduced transaction costs
    • Ease of access to financial resources
  3. Use of technology in disseminating price information
    • Ease away problems of information asymmetry
  4. Infrastructure development
  5. Improved transport logistics (for produce)
    • Efficiency in issues of service delivery (loading of livestock)
Group 2:
  • Diversifying the product
  • Complying with quality standards
  • Cost competitiveness
  • Institutional framework (e.g. cooperatives)
  • Fair trade market

Theme 4: Role of collective action in enhancing competitiveness of smallholder livestock farmers

Storytelling by Patrick Malope
Transaction costs you face as an individual.
What is collective action? When individuals come together, meet as a group with a common goal and to solve a common problem. E.g. lower prices: people can come as a group to increase it through the power of their group.
Collective action is about the benefit of the group.
The groups fail sometimes because it’s not always the case that all members benefit (equally). There are challenges to group formation.
How to do the study? We followed a case study approach. Our framework was that for people to form a group there must be a trigger.
There are some drivers that will make you act and they can be internal or external. Government can be a driver etc. Within the group there must be a leader triggering everyone to action.
Outcomes – We had 2 cooperatives to consider.
Membership from 700 to 7000 and activities are multi-purpose.
Benefits include trading at lower prices for transportation, credit etc.
Another cooperative with beef cattle production and ranches facilities are where they produce but everyone owns the animals and runs production differently.
Some people don’t participate as they’re supposed to do…
Community members need to share.
In conclusion: we found there is limited collective action in terms of production and marketing etc. and there’s lack of commitment of the groups. Social capital is very limited in Botswana, people don’t understand why they should work together etc.

Overall summary of theme 4

Theme 4 summary 20150306_165020.jpgThree contributing factors needed to support farmer groups:
  1. Capacity development
    • Mentoring/training
    • Democratization of farmer groups
    • Group dynamics
    • Leadership and governance
  2. Re-think financing models
    • Levies collection (re-direct to industry)
    • Business hubs
    • Learn from other examples (countries, crop sector and other sectors)
  3. Supportive policy environment
    • Creation of incentives
    • Group incentives and group funding
    • Recognition of farmer groups as important institutions (not threat)
Policy implications:
  • Need for capacity development
  • Improve marketing + physical infrastructures
  • Micro finance opportunities
  • Commodity group formation
  • Reduced lending rates

Key policy implications of this work

  1. There is need for capacity building amongst farmers, for them to realise the usefulness of collective action
  2. Improved access to finance
    • Reduced interest/lending rate
    • Micro finance opportunities
    • Encourage income generation within groups
  3. Government foster formation of commodity groups to facilitate self-help action amongst livestock owners
    • Effective & efficient operation should be emphasised
    • Where these already exist, their functions ought to be strengthened

What's needed in collective action to improve smallholder livestock competitiveness?

Group 1:
  • The capacity building
  • Formal agreement farmers, organisations and the other value chain players
  • Issues of leadership
  1. Leadership
  2. Governance
  3. Human resources
  • Share vision on a common goal
  • Supportive infrastructure (physical)
  • Financial support
  • Shared experience
  • Legislation supportive
  • Innovation
  • Information commodity prices
  • Technology
Group 2:
  • Educating farmers on the benefits of collective action
  • Management of group dynamics
  • Farmer to farmer benchmarking (local, regional and international)
  • Creation of incentive fo associations and groups
    • Contracts given to groups / associations
    • Group funding
  • Accountability to donors / government
  • Protection from unfair competition

What are the top 3 contributing factors needed to support farmer organisations in their roles of improving the competitiveness of smallholder livestock producers?

Group 1:
  1. Farmer group having consultation with policy makers
  2. Address marketing infrastructures
  3. Capacity development of farmer groups
    • Mentoring / training
    • Democratization of farmer groups
  4. Rethink financing models (in the context of the country)
    • Levies' collection - redirecting to industry
    • Business hubs
  5. Supportive policy environment: Recognition of farmer organizations as key (important) institutions
Group 2:
  1. Capacity building
    • Technical skills
    • Communication skills
    • Marketing skills
    • Group dynamics
  2. Improve/enhance access to credit/financial markets
    • Tripartite agreements (producer organisation, financial institution, processors/traders)
    • Government facilitation
  3. Improve infrastructure and access to markets
    • Logistics of transport
    • Collective bargaining

Theme 5: Government's role in the provision of livestock support services

Overall summary of theme 5

Theme 5 summary 20150306_165058.jpgSynthesis of the top three things + what's needed + government's role
  • Infrastructure development
    • Abattoirs, roads, handling facilities etc.
    • Telecom services
  • Capacity building
    • Breeding
    • Feeding
    • Marketing
    • Animal health
    • Farm management
    • Participation in policy process
  • Effective extension services
    • Technical information
    • Market requirements
    • Price information
    • Financial information
  • Privatise suitable services
    • Urban areas
    • Government to focus on remote areas
    • Monitor price/efficiency of services privatised

Key policy implications of this work

Top 3 things that the government can do to improve the competitiveness of smallholder livestock producers

Group 1:
  1. Improve information dissemination
  2. Reduce legal requirements for sale of livestock
  3. Smallholder farmers involvement in the policy process
Group 2:
  1. Infrastructure development
    • Construction of abattoirs, roads, handling facilities
    • Telecommunications
  2. Capacity building
    • Breeding
    • Feeding
    • Marketing
    • Animal management
    • Animal health practices
  3. Provision of effective extension services
    • Financial information
    • Market requirements
    • Technical requirements

What's needed with the government's role to improve smallholder livestock competitiveness?

Group 1:
  1. Government's intervention should be demand-driven (by the farmer) and should be done in a participatory and holistic manner
  2. Capacity building in agri-business to make the right decisions
  3. The performance indicators of government interventions should be impact-oriented
  4. Enabling environment - infrastructures
  5. Enhancing extension services
  6. Access to information by smallholders on policies, programmes and available support
  7. Regulation / controller
Group 2:
  • Privatisation of services in suitable areas
    • Ensure fair competition
  • Development of infrastructures in rural areas (agricultural production areas)
    • Roads, telecommunication etc.
  • Build capacity
    • Acquire information
    • Adopt new technologies
  • Improve extension services

Cross-cutting issues

(For this final session, we ran a world café around three cross-cutting theme questions).

How 'scaleable' are three interventions of your choice?

Table (a) / Jonas
Group 1:
  • Farmer groups formation / facilitation: very scalable
  • Capacity building: very scalable
  • Financial services (micro-credits, innovative financial models): moderately scalable
Group 2:
  1. Access to credit: Targeting existing farmer groups; encourage farmers to form groups; group credit guarantee schemes
  2. Access to market information: Internet platforms; text message on cell phone; radio/TV; Extension services
  3. Capacity building to improve productivity: Extension systems; exchange visits (demonstration to farmers) / benchmarking --> local, regional, national, international. Information sharing
Group 3:
  1. User of technology in dissemination of information on market/access: End user needs to know how to use the information + technology possible / easy to scale up.
  2. Effective extension services by the public sector: Government budget constraints + maybe enhance by cooperative with private sector
  3. Participatory approach to policy formation: Dependent on the government in the country. Improve SADC for policy (formation) advice

Table (b) / Nadhem
Group 1:
  1. Manure management: Externalities --> Gov't + NGOs.
    • Training
    • Awareness (how they could manage)
    • Village level: Chiefs (place) + demonstration pilot projects in villages
    • Partner with banks + private sector + NGOs
  2. Training husbandry:
    1. Train trainers (extension officers) --> train farmers
  3. Feeding systems: Small medium enterprises (SME)
    1. Research and development + identification
    2. Trials with farmers
    3. Regional networking (among countries)
Group 2:
  1. Capacity building on marketing / skills:
    • Workshops --> Levels: village level (livestock advisory centre)
  2. Information
    • Price / auction dates
    • Availability of veterinary services and supplies.
    • Who: Extension services _ Farmers' programmes.
    • SMS systems - agricultural show case
  3. Credits: Financial institutions
    • Guarantee and government
    • Group loans: farmers' associations + agribusiness units
Group 3:
Sensitizing policy makers + stakeholders for pro poor policies.
Use of technology and ICT --> enhancing husbandry practices
Market access through coordination along value chain players --> connecting the players of the VC (cooperatives + active).
Develop a livestock policy and agricultural policy

What is the effect of three interventions of your chose on households (gender, youth, labour)?

Table (a) / Muthoni
Group 1:
Group 2:
Group 3:

Table (b) / Klara
Group 1:

  1. Special programmes that target women and youth (credit guarantee schemes)
    • Use approaches that attract youth
    • Targeted training for women and youth
  2. Facilitating farmer group formation and capacity building
    • Both inclusive groups and groups targeting e.g. women/youth separately
    • Generally group formation will facilitate competitiveness
    • Initial set up costs in terms of labour time but possible collaboration effects in the longer term
    • We need to study how time spent in meetings (for capacity building etc.) affects farming (i.e. effects of reduced time spent on farm_
    • Find ways to reach farm labour with capacity building
  3. Innovative credit systems:
    • Credit as a household risk --> Credits need to be associated with capacity building on finance and credit
    • Local borrowing / exchange systems could be improved/supported
    • Alternative credit systems for those without security
Group 2:
  1. Use of technology in dissemination of information
    • Radio is non-discriminatory
    • Learn from commercial sector about how to target whom at what time
    • Youth well targeted by cell phone
    • Cellphone makes it possible to communicate while out working
    • Weekend farmers can be reached by email
  2. Effective extension services by public sector
    • Group approach" extension officer should not go to individuals
    • Depending on context it is relevant to have special groups for women/youth etc. but they also need to be included in the village groups
  3. Participatory approach to policy information
    • Farmer representatives should be targeted with information on new policies and feed back to the farmer group
  1. Youth can be reached with more up-to-date technology (it's a possibility and a challenge)
  2. Farmer groups should be inclusive and also with special focus (on women and youth)
  3. Extension to reach farm labour

What are the capacity development implications of three interventions of your choice?

Table (a) / Letsema
Group 1:
  1. Use of technology in disseminating information on market/access:
    • Central institution to collect information (producers, processors etc.) + Repackaging of information + Disseminating information
    • Targeting information to end users 'Speak the language' - what is the right medium for your end users?
    • Make use of existing resources e.g. email, phones, post etc.
  2. Effective extension services provided by the public sector:
    • Reduce ratio of extension workers to farmers
    • Private driven extension services to reduce the costs on the public sector
    • Learning from successful countries (e.g. India, Peru) at private sector provision
    • Address brain drain from public to private sector
  3. Participatory approach to policy formulation:
    • Better training of government policy maker (eg. technical side): formulation, monitoring, implementation
    • Inclusiveness of all stakeholders in ALL policy forums
Group 2:
  1. Access to credit:
    • Government-subsidised credit (e.g. safety net programmes to cushion risk for funder)
    • Government can vet criteria for funders targeted at small scale
    • Training of funders on project evaluation
  2. Access to market information:
    • Training farmers with market information
    • Channels of information (electronic + print media)
    • Cooperative channels e.g. workshops
    • Improve participation of private sector in the provision of market information e.g. private sector can provide information to their suppliers
  3. Capacity building to improve productivity:
    • Training on production technology
    • Agricultural training + vocational training at tertiary level
    • Better extension services
Group 3:
  1. Facilitation of formation of farmer groups
    • Guidelines on meeting procedures
    • Guidelines on governance systems e.g. election of leadership
    • Training on guidelines
    • Training on democratization of groups
    • Training on managing group dynamics (e.g. gender representation, conflict)
    • Guidelines on group financing
    • Guidelines on group constitution
    • Monitoring system to make sure guidelines are adhered to
    • Assisting group in formulation of a vision, goal, purpose
  2. Capacity building
    • Situation specific
    • Needs assessment (gap identification)
    • Find solutions
    • Identification of roles and responsibility
    • Monitoring system
    • Accountability for resources and results
    • Business record keeping
    • Bargaining + negotiation skills
  3. Innovative financial services
    • Training to understand services e.g. risks, costs etc.
    • Training on different types of credit, lessons to be learned form other case studies.
    • Training on negotiation + bargaining skills
Summary sheet:
  1. Market information:
    • Centralised collection, repackaging + effective communication
    • Private sector role
  2. Access to credit:
    • Training
    • Cushioning of risks
  3. Capacity development:
    • Training at tertiary level
    • Training on production methods/methodology
    • Policy formulation, implementation and monitoring
    • Guidelines for farmer groups
    • Extension services (private sector involvement, decrease ratio of extension workers to farmers)

Table (b) / Ferran
Group 1:
  1. Technical empowerment
    • Animal husbandry
    • Manure management
    • Alternative feeding systems
  2. Improve market access
    • Market requirements / information
    • Regulations
    • Marketing skills
    • Price dynamics
  3. Improve credit access: dissemination of information
  4. Establishment of farmer associations
Group 2:
  1. Raising awareness of stakeholders should be for pro-poor policy
  2. Use of technology / ICT (e.g. mobile phones)
  3. Market access improvement via coordination of value chain
  4. Access to credit
Group 3:

Closing words by Mike Nunn (Research program manager, animal health, ACIAR)

Organizers' agenda

· Documentation: who can help? Can we bring someone else?