Beef in Kenya
Beef industry in Kenya
The agricultural sector directly accounts for about 26 per cent of Kenya’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Kenya has a thriving livestock industry, which is one of the largest and most developed in the sub-Sahara Africa. The livestock sub-sector contributes about 10 per cent directly to the overall GDP. It also accounts for about 30 per cent of total agricultural products, which earn the country foreign exchange through the export of live animals, dairy products, hides and skins. There is need to take advantage of the poverty-reducing potential of the livestock sub-sector, by developing appropriate livestock technologies.
The development objectives of the beef sub-sector has been to increase production of beef and beef products through utilization of superior genotypes, improved husbandry techniques, value addition and marketing.
As such, improvement programs have been initiated in the past to improve the uptake of management strategies by beef farmers, and processing and export of beef mainly through the Kenya Meat Commission and a number of private initiatives. However, these programs faces many challenges such as inadequate breeding services, poor animal husbandry, inadequate extension and advisory services, inadequate feeds and feeding, disease outbreaks, high cost of inputs, poor access to markets and inadequate integration of industry players. Thislends significance to addressing beef sub-sector more coherently. After analysis of the various challenges along the beef product value chain, it was found prudent to establish Beef Research Institute to provide operational autonomy to support the beef sector through focused and efficient research.The Beef Research Institute addresses technologies related to beef production.