Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Friday, June 5, 2015

The Innovation platform of productive chickens for Africa’s smallholders

18–19 May 2015 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The African Chicken Genetic Gains project’s first management team meeting.

This is a new four-year African Chicken Genetic Gains (ACGG) project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
  • The project involves several institutions and will run from 2015 to 2019. It will work to genetically improve Africa’s chickens and to better deliver the superior chickens to small-scale farmers. It has four main aims: reduce poverty, raise productivity, increase consumption of animal protein in poor households and empower rural women. 
  • Beyond the project’s three target countries—Ethiopia, Nigeria and Tanzania—the germplasm, data and knowledge generated should also benefit millions of poor households in other countries where backyard chicken production remains a mainstay of rural and peri-urban livelihoods.
The African Chicken Genetic Gains project plans to leverage existing research and innovative approaches to develop and supply improved chicken genetics for the poultry value chains of the three target countries. The project will emphasize:
  1. High-producing birds well-adapted to low-input production systems
  2. Farmer preferred breeds
  3. Innovation platforms to help develop and spread solutions across value chains
  4. Public-private partnerships to advance the breeding, multiplication and delivery work
  5. Targetting poor women
The project will work to achieve all of the following:
  • Data-driven and culturally relevant understanding of the types of chickens poor farmers, especially women, prefer
  • A productive multi-country network of public-private partnerships for long-term chicken genetic improvement that employs modern tools to drive accelerated genetic gains and to deliver more productive, farmer-preferred breeds
  • Smallholders access to their preferred local breeds that have been pre-vaccinated and genetically enhanced so as to be at least 200% more productive
  • Evidence that adoption of the improved chicken genotypes indeed leads to significantly increased production, productivity, income, and household consumption of animal-source foods among smallholders
  • Evidence of increased empowerment of women smallholder farmers in chicken value chains

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