KENYA – Kenya has revealed plans to enhance its livestock sector with the completion of a state-of-the-art slaughterhouse in Isiolo County.

Mithika Linturi, the Minister of Agriculture, announced on February 23 that the US$5.8 million project, dedicated to exports, is set to become operational by May 2024.

He highlighted that the World Bank has played a pivotal role in funding this initiative, contributing a substantial part of the US$5.8 million investment.

The slaughterhouse, situated within the Isiolo Livestock Park, is designed to process over 1,800 heads of cattle daily, establishing itself as a crucial hub for meat processing and trading.

It will also serve as a marketplace for local livestock farmers in Isiolo County and the adjacent counties of Samburu, Laikipia, Garissa, Wajir, and Marsabit.

Mithika Linturi emphasized the commitment of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Development to ensure market standards are met.

The Ministry, in collaboration with the county government, also revealed plans to provide training for farmers on proper breeding techniques.

“The project is anticipated to directly employ 80 people and benefit more than 20,000 families once it becomes operational.”

With the livestock sub-sector contributing 40% to Kenya’s agricultural GDP and employing approximately half of the agricultural workforce, the Isiolo slaughterhouse is poised to play a pivotal role in enhancing the nation’s meat industry.

In 2022, Kenya generated over US$93.4 million in revenue from meat shipments, showcasing the economic significance of the livestock sub-sector.

Linturi highlighted the government’s vision to improve the livestock trade environment, and additional funding from the World Bank and the county government of Isiolo will further bolster the sector.

“The Isiolo Holding Grounds, where the modern abattoir is being developed, is expected to have a slaughter capacity of 160 camels, 300 cattle, and 2,500 sheep and goats per day by March 15, 2024.”

Addressing various challenges, including climate conditions, rangeland fragmentation, low livestock productivity, poor animal health, and a high-risk trade environment, Linturi emphasized that tackling these issues will significantly contribute to the economy.

He revealed that as the ministry leverages the LAPSSET corridor Master plan and USAID’s Monitor Group Consultancy report, it aims to create more livestock investment opportunities in the region, benefiting small and medium-scale livestock enterprises and fostering sustainable livelihoods in Arid and Semi-Arid Lands.

 

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