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Government to create new policy to develop a National Livestock sector

boran cattle

State Department of Livestock (SDL) has partnered with Kenya Markets Trust (KMT) to develop the National Livestock Policy that will help guide development of the sector which has been marred with unclear production systems and policy systems constrains.

According to a 2011 research by David Jakinda Otieno for Newcastle University, in Kenya, the cattle enterprise is an important source of livelihood for many farmers. However, lack of analytical evidence on efficiency levels of farmers in various production systems constrains policy making on optimal resource allocation.

“The policy will provide the much-needed framework which will in turn create linkages between the National government, County Governments, private sector actors as well as development and donor agencies.” Said KMT CEO Kamau Kuria.

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The first draft of the policy document was endorsed by stakeholders from different departments of the livestock sector.

The document will also help loop the development and the transformation of the livestock and meat sector in Kenya.

Among the issues the Livestock policy will cover relate farm animal genetic resources, livestock feeds and nutrition, inputs, animal diseases and pests, livestock marketing, research and extension and food security.

In the generation of the draft Policy, KMT collaborated with the State Department of Livestock to convene a team of experts who reviewed the first draft in January 2019, followed by successful by three regional validation workshops that had participation from all the 47 counties. The regional workshops were held in Mombasa, Isiolo and Kisumu.

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It is these regional workshops that culminated into the national validation workshop.

Speaking during the validation forum,  Ms Mary Nzomo, the Chairperson of the County Executive Commitee Caucus on Agriculture and Livestock makes appreciated the policy citing that it covers key issues relating to  farm animal genetics,  generating resources, livestock feed and nutrition and Extension and food security

“I appreciate that the policy provides synergies and linkages for collaboration between the county and the national government. It addresses clearly areas such as ICT, gender mainstreaming, Genetically Modified Organism (GMO), social inclusion and climate change,” she added

Ms Nzomo pointed out that areas such as the periodic and comprehensive livestock census, addressing drug residues in feeds and food, livestock insurance and anti-microbial resistance  have been given due attention, which will in turn help  in improving the markets,” she cited

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The PS for livestock Andrew Tuimor,cited that the policy will help capacity build county agricultural mandates. He pointed out that this is an important tool in shaping the agenda of the sector.

“It brings on board private sectors. All of us should own the policy if we are especially to ensure that they big Four agenda is achieved,” he added.

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