Livestock are a crucial source of food, employment, and income for much of East Africa’s rural population. The sector contributes substantially to export revenues, national GDPs, and thus the region’s broader socioeconomic development. Livestock production and related value chains, can be the foundation of resilience and sustainable development for pastoral, agro-pastoral, and mixed crop livestock systems in East Africa. Yet, livestock face a wide range of challenges, particularly in terms of ensuring sustainable access to and use of water and feeds for livestock. Inadequate availability and supply of quality feed and water critically limit the efficiency of livestock in terms of production, reproduction, animal health and welfare, human health, and the economic benefits derived from livestock-based livelihoods in the region. Countries in East Africa identified lack of animal feed policy, strategy, and institutional framework to support the animal feed sector as a major constraint hindering subsector growth, livestock productivity, resilience, and trade. In order to address this, the first Animal Feed Action Plan was developed for East Africa through a consultative and participatory process. The Action Plan captures experiences and lessons learned by a wide spectrum of stakeholders. It provides a means to collectively address some of the constraints in accessing and using animal feed and provides a guided approach to establish partnership by countries, communities, the private sector, and stakeholders to enhance sustainable production of quality livestock and products. The Action Plan is believed to set a good example for other regions to develop their feed action plan.
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