USGC Explores Feed and Poultry Industry in Sub-Saharan Africa

By Cary Sifferath, U.S. Grains Council Regional Director for the Middle East and Africa

Dedicated to Developing Markets, Enabling Trade and Improving Lives, U.S. Grains Council staff set out to Mozambique and Tanzania to observe the poultry and feed industries and explore the possibility of developing a program to further enhance the production capacity of those sectors in Sub-Saharan Africa. The Council has previously worked in the region on biotechnology promotion and poultry nutrition programs and, despite the discontinuation of the program in 2010, has remained in communication with many of its poultry and feed industry contacts in the region.

Tanzania has a basic foundation in the feed milling and poultry sector, but there are serious concerns related to the handling of equipment and the reliability of supply for basic materials. While organizations are currently working in Tanzania on the development of grain production, there is potential to expand this work by helping the industry improve the utilization of grains being produced and used to create animal protein from chicken and eggs. Better training on how to optimize the use of raw materials available to feed millers, including the benefits of using a more corn and soy based diet, could significantly benefit the Tanzanian feed and poultry sector.

Compared to Tanzania, the poultry and feed milling industry in Mozambique was a little more developed. The largest concerns of Mozambique's poultry industry are biosecurity issues and competition from Brazilian imports. The Mozambique poultry industry has created large ad campaigns to fight Brazilian imports and have made progress with domestic chicken production up from 25 percent to 75 percent. Training on biosecurity issues is important, but to make it sustainable, there needs to be industry efforts to have employees follow the biosecurity procedures. There is a large amount of labor available but understanding the importance of specific issues, such as biosecurity within the poultry sector, would be of great value to further their development.

In past years, the Council has developed programs in feed milling and poultry operations in other regions that were on similar levels to Mozambique and Tanzania. We are hopeful that a new program in either country could have a beneficial impact. While there are vast differences between the two countries, USGC will continue to evaluate where best to continue our mission of Developing Markets, Enabling Trade, Improving Lives.

Click here to view more pictures from the trip.