TANZANIA – Tanzania has reaped substantial financial gains, amounting to over 160 billion Tanzanian Shillings (approximately 64 million US dollars), through the exports of meat, milk, hides and skins during the 2022/2023 financial year.
According to Mr Abdallah Ulega, the Minister for Livestock and Fisheries, the livestock sector has played a pivotal role in this economic success story, contributing to the livelihoods of 2.2 million Tanzanian households, equivalent to 35 percent of the population.
“This sector has been responsible for the production of 805,000 tonnes of meat, 3.6 billion litres of milk, 5.5 billion eggs, and 14.1 million pieces of hides and skins,” he noted.
Minister Ulega added that while the sector has made substantial strides, there is still room for growth. Currently, the per capita consumption of meat stands at 15 kilograms, while the recommended rate is 50 kilograms per person.
“Similarly, milk consumption is at 62 litres per person compared to the recommended 200 litres, and egg consumption is at 106 eggs per year against the recommended 300.”
Recognizing the vast potential within the livestock sector, Minister Ulega highlighted several investment opportunities.
These included the availability of arable land suitable for pasture seed and pasture production, a large livestock population exceeding 77 million, and diverse agro-ecological zones conducive to various types of livestock production.
Tanzania boasts a ready market for livestock and livestock products, not only within its 61 million population but also in the East African Community (EAC), the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC), and the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), comprising a market of over 1.4 billion consumers.
Meanwhile, the government has taken several initiatives to bolster commercial livestock production and ensure a stable business environment.
The initiatives involve the Livestock Sector Transformation Plan (LSTP), which encompasses activities such as improving animal breeds through artificial insemination, strengthening pasture and water development, and enhancing animal health systems through vaccination campaigns and tick control.
Additionally, the government is committed to providing extension services, research, training, and value addition for livestock products.
It has also created an enabling environment for business and investment, with tax waivers and other incentives to facilitate the trade of livestock and livestock products.
Minister Ulega shared that 240 youth have been recruited in this program, equipping them with innovative mindsets, entrepreneurship skills, and business-oriented perspectives.
In his closing remarks, Mr. Ulega emphasized the significance of animal source foods in preventing malnutrition and improving nutrition globally.