CAMEROON – Cameroon has launched the CFAF65 billion (US$119.7m) Livestock and Fish Farming Value Chain Development Project (PDCVEP), aimed to boost the competitiveness of the beef, pork, and fish sectors.

The initiative has been funded through a loan injection of CFAF55 billion (US$101.3m) from the African Development Bank (AfDB) and capital contribution of CFAF10 billion (US$18.4m) by the Government of Cameroon.

The PDCVEP is scheduled to run for the next five years, targeting to improve producers’ income and create job opportunities in the beneficiary segments, reports Business in Cameroon.

To achieve these goals, 15 million grass seed straws, 1,000 frozen embryos (for the production of 500 calves), cattle semen, and high-yielding piglets will be produced and distributed.

In the framework of the project, the farmers will also be trained on artificial insemination techniques and cattle fattening, while over 350 young people will be supported in the development of animal farming businesses through credit facilitation.

AfDB contribution will help achieve 9.3% growth rate assigned to the sector

According to AfDB, the poultry, beef, pork, and fish sectors are among the major contributors of the country’s economic growth and that its financial support will likely help achieve the 9.3% growth rate assigned to the sector.

However, the genetic performance of the cattle and pig breeds used is still not of desirable qualities. To this end the PDCVEP will take measures to improve the genetic inputs and feeds used.

As for the fish sector it was selected as its imports constitute the second largest expenditure in the country’s import bill after petroleum products.

Animal feed prices in Kenya rise

Meanwhile in Kenya, the livestock sector is currently grappling with soaring costs of feeds, on the back of rising maize prices, which forms 80 percent of the raw materials used.

“We have witnessed a sharp hike in the cost of maize within a very short time with the price of raw material across the board going up by 40 percent.”

Mr Joseph Karuri – Chairman of the Association of Kenya Animal Feeds Manufacturers

The cost of a 90-kilogramme (kg) bag of maize has crossed the Ksh3,000 (US$27) mark for the first time since beginning of the year, from a low of Ksh2,500 (US$23) following restrictions of grain coming in from Uganda, reports Business Daily.

Mr Joseph Karuri, chairman of the Association of Kenya Animal Feeds Manufacturers said the cost of animal meals would be reviewed following the sharp rise in the maize price.

“We have witnessed a sharp hike in the cost of maize within a very short time with the price of raw material across the board going up by 40 percent,” he said.

Mr Karuri said most millers are at the moment concerned with breaking even to pay their workers and keep on running their entities other than making profit.

Processors are also grappling with an increase in cost of key supplements such as sunflower cake that has gone up from Kh18 (US$0.17) last year in April to Ksh45 (US$0.42) for a kilo. Soya has increased from Ksh55 (US$0.51) to Ksh80 (US$0.74) for the same quantity with a kilo of wheat bran going up from Ksh12 (US$0.11) to Ksh23 (US$0.21).

Most of these supplements are imported from Tanzania, Uganda and Malawi, and a weaker shilling against the dollar has made the matters worse.

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