Setting research agendas for animal science
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CTA. 1998. Setting research agendas for animal science. Spore 75. CTA, Wageningen, The Netherlands.
Permanent link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10568/48114
Internet URL: http://spore.cta.int/images/stories/pdf/old/spore75.pdf
international seminar which was held in Nairobi, Kenya from 27 to 30 January 1998
Livestock production and development plays an important part in the economies of developing countries. In order to discuss the interactions between livestock development and various environmental concerns, CTA, the British Society of Animal Science, the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute and the International Livestock Research Institute co-organised an international seminar which was held in Nairobi, Kenya from 27 to 30 January 1998. The main objective of this seminar was to address three areas in which animal production in the developing countries interact with the environment: food and livestock, land and livestock, and livelihoods and livestock. The seminar brought together 190 participants from Africa, Asia, South America and Europe, and was a follow-up to another CTA seminar on livestock held in Mbabane, Swaziland in July 1997 (see Spore 72). Keynote presentations examined the importance of agriculture to Africa and the challenges faced, including setting research agenda both regionally and globally. The challenges facing livestock and agriculture in general included increased expectations, declining public and donor funding, narrow technological bases, poor linkages among partners in research and little involvement of the private sector in research. Papers presented on food and livestock issues highlighted the need for a holistic understanding of livestock, and improved farmer-researcher collaboration in research projects. Addressing land and livestock issues, presenters highlighted the need to incorporate the environmental cost into livestock production and to achieve sustainable development. The seminar also underlined the need to understand the constraints faced by developing countries of incorporating environmental costs into livestock production. Global warming and greenhouse gas issues were also considered in relation to livestock production. Improved understanding of the contribution and role of livestock in natural resources management was stressed. Participatory approaches and the social value of livestock were discussed in the context of livelihoods and livestock. The seminar further affirmed the need to involve farmers in setting research agendas aimed at improving the livelihoods of livestock owners. The tools used to assess the impact of diseases on livestock productivity were discussed, including use of geographical information systems. Participants visited a small-scale peri-urban and mixed crop and livestock farm, semi-arid small- and medium-size farm and a semi-arid mixed farm to familiarize themselves with the practical aspects of livestock production in these environments. The seminar concluded that more emphasis should be placed on developing a holistic approach to livestock development. This would ensure that there is sustainable development with minimum environmental damage. The workshop also recommended the development of policies that enhance the benefits of livestock to those who own them, and called for more private sector participation in livestock research. The availability of the proceedings will shortly be announced in Spore.