Tuesday, June 19, 2012

0 Value-Addition and Livestock Marketing in Drylands

A Kenya Meat Commission processing plant. Photo/FILE 
Northern Kenya is set to reap from the ongoing construction of abattoirs and tanneries around the country that are expected to provide ready market for livestock, hides and skins. The slaughterhouses will give a big boost to farmers around Isiolo, Marsabit, Turkana and Garissa, Wajir, Samburu, Laikipia and Moyale. The Ministry of Livestock Development has earmarked KES1.35 billion for the construction of up to five slaughterhouses to beef up export earnings from livestock products. “These facilities will help traders to shift from selling live animals to processed meat products in higher earnings,” said Dr Mohammed Abdi Kuti, the minister for Livestock Development. Cattle-keepers in the region have not been able to successfully market their products in main urban areas where demand is high and in the export market due to lack of support services.

The abattoirs are being built in the arid and semi-arid areas of West Pokot, Isiolo, Garissa, Wajir and Lokichoggio which supply more than 40 per cent per cent of the country’s total livestock demand, especially for beef, mutton and goat meat. Data from the Kenya Investment Promotion Agency (KIA) shows that rangeland cattle constitute 34 per cent of the national herd. The region has 29 per cent of the total cattle in the country at 2.1 million and 37 per cent of all the goats at 3.1 million. It also has 2.1 million sheep which represent 33 per cent of these animals in the country and 694 camels which is 42 per cent of the national population. 

The proposal is to establish the main abattoir at Isiolo town, which is expected to slaughter 150 cattle and 200 goats and sheep in a day at an estimated cost of Sh656 million. The ministry is also building 14 satellite slaughterhouses at Sh25 million each in North Eastern and Rift Valley provinces to act as collection points and market for the produce. These are expected to increase returns on investment by value addition and also link producers to markets. The 19 abattoirs will be completed in the next one year and will complement private, municipal and KMC slaughterhouses. “The beneficiaries will include livestock herders from the ASAL districts of Northern Kenya, animal traders, and the unemployed youth in the area,” said Ken Manyala, the business development manager at KIA. It will also open up the region that has for long been seen as wasteland. The slaughterhouses are a step towards achieving the Vision 2030 goal that calls for innovative, commercially-oriented and modern farming. 

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Source: Business Daily, Wednesday, June 20, 2012. Story by By RAWLINGS OTINI


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