Livestock’s future: An opportunity not a threat

“A few highlights from the paper:

* Aggregate demand for livestock-derived foods is rising fast across Africa and Asia, driven largely by population growth in Africa and rising incomes in Asia, but remains low by western standards. For example, the average per capita consumption of meat in Africa is less than one-sixth that of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries (other estimates place it as low as one-tenth).
In the developing world, livestock are much more than just food: They are central to local economies, contribute significantly to agricultural GDP, provide critical protein and nutrients otherwise unavailable, and support viable livelihoods for nearly a billion people, allowing them to make better dietary and health choices.
* Livestock are raised in widely different ways around the world. This diversity can be a source of strength, enabling farmers to develop livestock/animal production, processing and marketing systems that are safer and more sustainable, responsible and efficient. * For emerging and developing nations, where farms of less than 20 hectares supply most of the livestock-derived foods as well as the cereals consumed in these countries, four main options are available for increasing production: Intensification of existing systems; development of western-style, industrial farms; importation of more livestock-derived foods; and possibly in the longer-term future, use of alternate forms of protein, such as lab-based meat.
* As the access to and availability of milk, meat and eggs increases for poorer populations, policymakers will need to promote sensible, balanced consumption as well as messaging that incorporates dietary, environmental, public health and animal welfare dimensions. Governments will face a plethora of trade-offs in implementing policies that support a vibrant transformation of the livestock sector.“ – David Aronson

ILRI news

Screenshot 2019-02-26 12.52.24 Some of the livestock sector’s numerous roles (credit: ILRI).

The World Economic Forum’s Shaping the Future initiative published a white paper prepared by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) on livestock’s role in the developing world

The World Economic Forum (WEF) invited ILRI to prepare a white paper on the future of livestock. Published under the auspices of the WEF’s Shaping the Future of Food initiative, which focuses on how to develop inclusive, sustainable and nutritious food systems, ILRI’s paper addresses opportunities for the livestock sector to sustainably meet the growing demand for animal source foods in developing and emerging economies to 2030 and beyond.

The paper focuses on four critical issues related to livestock in the developing world: First, the continuing rapid growth of demand for animal-sourced foods, especially in Africa and Asia; second, the multiple roles that livestock play, not just as food but as ‘living animal assets,’…

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Launching today—CGIAR Antimicrobial Resistance Hub

“The aim is to help countries reduce and refine their antimicrobial use in crop, livestock and fish farming so as to help stem the rise of drug resistance
in disease-causing organisms and thus protect public health.” – ILRI

ILRI news

Launching today in Kenya is a

CGIAR AMR Hub

for powering global, national and local partnerships

to help stem the global rise of drug-resistant pathogens

that is increasingly putting public health at risk.

This morning on the Nairobi campus of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI), the first partners meeting of a new CGIAR Antimicrobial Resistance Hub will be opened. Scientists working at this hub aim to help reduce agriculture-associated antimicrobial resistance in low- and middle-income countries. Working in a wealth of partnerships with national governments and agencies, the hub will apply one-health approaches to managing agriculture-associated antimicrobial risks.

Antibiotics and other antimicrobial drugs are among the most important tools available to medical and veterinary professionals for curing human and animal diseases and improving their welfare, yet these drugs are increasingly failing. Development of resistance to these drugs in disease-causing bacteria and other microbes poses a major threat…

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New research partnership to tackle the global problem of #antimicrobialresistance

AgHealth

Sheep market in Doyogena, Ethiopia (photo credit: ILRI/Zerihun Sewunet).

To tackle a growing problem of rising antimicrobial resistance in low- and middle-income countries, CGIAR, a global research partnership for a food-secure future, is forming an international hub to help integrate and channel research and development efforts.

The hub, launched on 21–22 February 2019, in Nairobi, Kenya, will be led and hosted by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI).

Antibiotics and other antimicrobial drugs are among the most important tools available to medical and veterinary professionals for curing human and animal diseases and improving their welfare, yet these drugs are increasingly failing. Development of resistance to these drugs in disease-causing bacteria and other microbes poses a major threat to global development; the World Bank estimates that annual global gross domestic product could fall by more than 1 trillion United States dollars (USD) by 2030 because of it.

While the…

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Diversified Agri-food Systems: Bastions of biodiversity, nutrition and resilience

THE GFAR BLOG

foxtail-2769772_960_720

According to The State of the Food Security and Nutrition in the World released last year (SOFI 2018), global hunger and malnutrition has increased considerably since 2016, reaching 821 million undernourished people – approximately one person out of every nine in the world. This means that the number of people suffering from hunger has returned to levels from almost a decade ago.

The increased number of people suffering from hunger and malnutrition has been the result of climate variability and exposure to complex, frequent and intense climate extremes. Climate variability and extreme climatic conditions have repercussions for food utilization as they harm agricultural productivity and food production and cropping patterns. This leads to food availability shortfalls and negative repercussions on nutrient quality and safety of food.

SOFI 2018SOFI 2018 noted that hunger is worse in those countries facing excessive rainfall and drought, and where the livelihood of the majority of the…

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FAO sets the record straight–86% of livestock feed is inedible by humans

“If not consumed by livestock, crop residues and by-products could quickly become an environmental burden as the human population grows and consumes more and more processed food. Animals also consume food that could potentially be eaten by people. Grains account for 13% of the global livestock dry matter intake.” – Susan

ILRI Clippings

Cow Jar, by Jean Dubuffet, 1943.

As the media frenzy caused by a ‘planetary health diet’ proposed in a new report from an EAT-Lancet commission this month continues, it is perhaps timely to recall that the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has set the record straight regarding not just the level of greenhouse gases that livestock emit (see yesterday’s posting on this blog) but also incorrect information about how much food (crops eatable by humans) is consumed by livestock. It’s not a lot.

The EAT-Lancet report summarizes scientific evidence for a global food system transition towards healthy diets from sustainable agriculture. The report concludes that a global shift towards a diet made up of high quantities of fruits, vegetables and plant-based protein and low quantities of animal protein could catalyze the achievement of both the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement to…

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Are we eating less meat?—Oxford Martin School fellow Hannah Ritchie confirms ‘No’

ILRI Clippings

Broken Record Alert:

People WILL NOT change their diets for environmental reasons.

No matter how often we hear “EAT LESS MEAT”

we eat more meat when we can afford it, because we like it.

@HannahRitchie02 reports.

—@TamarHaspel on Twitter, 4 Feb 2019

The following excerpts are taken from a BBC analysis piece published yesterday that was commissioned by the BBC from Hannah Ritchie, an expert from the Oxford Martin School and the non-profit organization Global Change Data Lab.

‘Rising incomes
‘. . . [G]lobal meat consumption has increased rapidly over the past 50 years. Meat production today is nearly five times higher than in the early 1960s—from 70 million tonnes to more than 330 million tonnes in 2017.

‘A big reason for this is that there are many more people to feed. Over that period the world population more than doubled. In the early 1960s there were around three billion of…

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Where nutrients and protein sourced from livestock remain vital—Crawford Fund

“To a considerable extent the report ignores the significant role that income and protein from livestock plays for hundreds of millions of smallholder farmers.“ – SUSAN

ILRI Clippings

Standing Child (Stehendes Kind) by Erich Heckel, 1910.

‘Coinciding with the launch of the EAT-Lancet “Healthy Diets from Sustainable Food Systems” report, Dr Colin Chartres, the [Crawford] Fund’s CEO, . . . discusses the importance of ‘smart foods’ and smart people for a healthy population and planet.

‘In late January the Eat-Lancet Foundation released its Healthy Diets from Sustainable Food Systems report. Its headline message is:

“Transformation to healthy diets by 2050 will require substantial dietary shifts. Global consumption of fruits, vegetables, nuts and legumes will have to double, and consumption of foods such as red meat and sugar will have to be reduced by more than 50%. A diet rich in plant-based foods and with fewer animal source foods confers both improved health and environmental benefits.”

‘Whilst this message is not exactly new—the late Professor Tony McMichael from ANU [Australian National University] had been a long-time advocate of the…

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