NIGERIA – The demand for animal protein sources in Africa is projected to more than quadruple by 2050, attributed to the rising population and change in consumer eating habits with a preference for high protein source products such as meat, poultry, fish and eggs.
This presents lucrative opportunities for growth of the budding animal feed manufacturing industry in the region which registered a 7.5% increase in production in 2019 according to the latest Alltech Global Feed Survey, recording 43.7 million metric tonnes (MMT).
Despite the rise in production, the animal feed sector in the region which is still at its formative stage has been grappling with issues of supply mainly due to challenges of accessing raw materials i.e. maize and soya bean.
This can be clearly seen in the case of Nigeria’s poultry industry which has been making headlines recently, lamenting over scarcity of feeds, leading to rising prices of the commodity thus poising a threat to the development of the sector.
To this end the United States Soybean Export Council (USSEC), the American Soybean Association’s World Initiative for Soy in Human Health (ASA/WISHH) and the US Grains Council (USGC) have jointly expressed their dedication towards supporting and enhancing the development and growth of the African feed industry as well as long term commercial trade development.
Their pledged commitment is on the back of the realisation that African feed industry is generating solutions to enhance the continent’s soybean value chain, reports This Day Live.
To spear head their efforts, the partners are planning to establish Soy Excellence Centres (SECs) in Africa starting with one in Egypt and that the site planned for Nigeria was already in the works.
According to Regional Director for South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, US Soybean Export Council, Kevin Roekpe, the centres will provide training, resources and education to all members of the soy value chain, including farmers, animal protein integrators, feed millers, animal nutritionists and local academic resources.
This will help build awareness of the benefits of soy in animal feed, aquaculture and human consumption through teaching and highlighting best practices in the production of soy.
In addition, Nigeria has been identified as a market that represents a growth opportunity for US soy and that the country could emerge as one of the top three growth markets by 2030.
According to USSEC, depending on credit availability and many other factors, Nigeria could become a two to four million metric ton (MMT) market for US Soy in the medium to long-term.
Moving away from dependency of soyabean imports, the country has been mulling investments in the sector and put in place policies and strategies to ensure its growth.
Earlier in the week, Ghana Commodity Exchange (GCX) entered into a partnership with the RDF Ghana, a development finance institution, to avail a GH¢1 million (US$170,500) dedicated credit line earmarked for soya aggregation.
According to the trading platform, the funds will support brokers to aggregate Soya into the GCX designated warehouses for trading and immediately settle farmer’s payment for the commodities they deposit.
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