Bright Rwamirama, Honourable State Minister for Animal Industry, Uganda (left), and Modibo Traoré, FAO sub-regional coordinator for eastern Africa and representative to Ethiopia, the African Union and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa, at the ILRI@40 conference in Nairobi, 1 Oct 2014 (photo credit: ILRI/Paul Karaimu).
Which matters most to Africa’s agricultural development? Research or infrastructure? We heard that both were vital at ILRI’s 40-year anniversary event in Nairobi, Kenya, on 1 Oct 2014. (No arguments from us!)
‘Research must precede Africa’s efforts to attain food security and reduce poverty through investments in smallholder agriculture, a livestock conference has heard. Livestock experts argue that without first conducting research, any investment increase in the smallholder system would be unsustainable, and could harm the environment.
‘Modibo Traoré, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) sub-regional coordinator for Eastern Africa, in a keynote address during a conference to mark the 40th anniversary of the International Livestock Research Institute last month (1 October), noted that the African scientific community must help produce evidence-based research.
Due to little investment in livestock research, predictions by various institutions show that Africa will be importing 15 per cent of its milk unless things change drastically.”. . .
‘Many governments in Africa are not adequately funding agricultural research and less money goes into livestock research . . . .
“Due to little investment in livestock research, predictions by various institutions show that Africa will be importing 15 per cent of its milk unless things change drastically,” Traore added.
‘Uganda’s minister for animal industry, said his government has prioritised investment in infrastructure including roads and electricity to facilitate smooth market access and to enable value additions to thrive. . . .
[Bright] Rwamirama acknowledged the success story of smallholder dairy sectors in Kenya and Uganda which are now able to meet domestic demand and export, proving that cash invested in research, disease control and productivity was money well spent.’
Read the whole article at SciDevNet: Research key to ‘sustainable smallholder agriculture’, 6 Nov 2014.
More information about ILRI@40
Plenary sessions of both days (6-7 Nov 2014) of the ILRI@40 conference in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia are available on our livestream site: http://www.ilri.org/livestream
Visit ilri.org/40 to find out about the other ILRI@40 events.
Follow #ilri40 on Twitter.
Read recent blog posts about ILRI@40: