AFRICA—Nutreco, a Dutch producer of animal nutrition, fish feed and processed meat products has received a US$4.8 million grant to establish feed mills to hard-to-reach communities in Africa
The grant, awarded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is one of the first investments from the foundation in the animal feed space and is set go towards accelerating the implementation of localized, sustainable complete feed production in sub-Saharan Africa.
Compound feed production across Africa is limited and feed production facilities are costly to install due to inefficiencies and infrastructure challenges.
For this reason, unless small-scale livestock farmers gain access to quality animal feed, they face reduced margins and uncertain futures, said Nutreco.
The US$4.8 million grant will directly fund 21 Hendrix4U complete feed production projects initially in Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria and Uganda.
Hendrix4U provides a ‘factory-in-a-box’ for rural areas ensuring access to quality compound feed production for small-scale producers, in a financially sustainable way, said Nutreco.
In addition to the facilities themselves, feed-producing distributors gain access to training and education in those markets.
They will learn how to evaluate raw materials in terms of quality and nutritional values to validate the use of local crops for specific animal nutrition applications.
They will also be taught about how to lower the risk of mycotoxin contamination in compound feed components, and they will be given training in feed mill management, finance, and business acumen, among other topics.
Nutreco partners and supports organisations around the planet to ensure it can play its role in Feeding the Future.
Nutreco CEO, Fulco van Lede, noted that more than half of the projected global population growth in the coming decades will take place in Africa. Many there, he continued, will face food insecurity and hunger if there is no investment in innovation backed development to increase the sustainable production of food in the region.
“Today’s grant funding serves as validation of the work we are doing in Africa to equip producers with the right tools to future proof their livelihoods,” he said.
Across the African continent, Nutreco is active in over 40 countries with teams in 15 countries, with over 500 people dedicated to aquaculture and animal nutrition.
Nutreco made its debut in the African market in 2001 by acquiring a share of the Egyptian company Hendrix Misr, which came under full ownership in 2013 and was renamed Skretting Egypt.
The Dutch company increased its presence in 2014 through a fish feed joint venture in Nigeria, and, in 2016, it also started a fish feed joint venture in Zambia and earlier this year formed two aquaculture joint ventures in Kenya and Uganda.
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