Home News General Inspiring Change for the African Animal Agricultural Sector

The 6th All Africa Conference on Animal Agriculture kicked off in earnest with over 300 delegates representing over 20 countries congregating to discuss challenges and solutions to African animal agriculture. The conference, which has been held every four years since its inauguration in 1992, focuses on various thematic areas of concern to livestock production including: new technologies, regional and global trends that have an impact on animal agriculture and smart subsidies that do not distort the market, amongst others. This year’s theme of macro-trends and future opportunities is shining the spotlight on the potential of Africa’s animal agriculture and its related products with discussions on how to turn those opportunities into realities that benefit everyone.

The Global Alliance for Livestock Veterinary Medicines (GALVmed) has been supporting this conference for the past four years and the conference has played a vital role in shaping the continent’s priorities for the livestock sector. This is in line with GALVmed’s principle of facilitating dialogue and partnerships that work towards improving the livelihoods of poor livestock keepers.

Home-Grown Solutions

In his keynote address, Dr. Hameed Nuru, GALVmed’s Senior Director for Policy and External Affairs challenged the participants to come up with tangible solutions that will address the challenges that plague the livestock sector in Africa. He argued that Africa needs home-grown solutions that include taking stock of where we are and taking advantage of opportunities available while working together to move the sector forward.

Dr. Nuru focused his presentation on four key areas including research for practical use where he urged the participants to design their research programmes with the end user in mind and to make use of local knowledge to increase adoption by farmers.

He also pointed out that in the past, the livestock community has not had a clear and consistent message to drive the livestock agenda forward and the fragmented voices has sent mixed signals to those interested in supporting the sector. He called for a unilateral message that everyone working in the sector can properly advocate for.

“We need to stop the silo approach and look at the overall objective we are all working towards, which is to improve livelihoods,” said Dr. Nuru.

Smarter partnerships

Dr Nuru also urged the participants to forge smart partnerships, by setting out clear principles of engagement with governments, the private sector, NGOs, donors and farmers. These partnerships should create alliances that work towards a common goal.

And finally, he called for an enabling policy environment for the sector to thrive. He pointed out that the enforcement of existing policies is still a major challenge in Africa affecting many who depend on the sector.

For more information:

– Follow the conference on our Twitter page @GALVmed
– View Dr Nuru’s presentation
– Learn more about the conference and its objectives