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The role of livestock in food security, poverty reduction and wealth creation in West Africa

The role of livestock in food security, poverty reduction and wealth creation in West Africa

Livestock is key to 377 million people in West Africa and in some countries, up to 60% of the population is involved in livestock production. The demand for animal products is increasing with population growth, urbanization, growing middle class, and due to shifting consumer preferences towards animal products. To meet this growing demand, countries in West Africa must engage in accelerated sustainable livestock production undertaking. Livestock development is key to eradicate hunger and poverty. This book attempts to provide up-to-date, and reliable information on the potentials, opportunities, and challenges of the livestock subsector in West Africa. 

July 24, 2020
Pulses and their byproducts as animal feed

Pulses and their by-products as animal feed

This document provides a state-of-the-art review of the recent research (published and unpublished) on the use of pulses and their by-products as animal feed. It aims at raising awareness on the use of pulses and their by-products. It highlights the nutritional role of pulses and pulse by-products as animal feed and is a contribution to the legacy of the 2016 International Year of Pulses. This document will further enhance the use of these feed resources in other continents, besides Asia, where many pulse by-products are simply dumped. It is also expected that the synthesis presented contributes to make the use of pulses and their by-products as animal feed more efficient. This document will be useful for extension workers, researchers, feed industry, policy-makers and donors alike.

June 18, 2020
Opinion paper: A regional feed action plan – one-of-a-kind example from East Africa

Opinion paper: A regional feed action plan – one-of-a-kind example from East Africa

Open access document. This paper puts forward a case for formulation of a regional animal feed action plan (RAFAP) and highlights its potential benefits.

May 25, 2020
Echo community home page

ECHO has been helping thousands of development workers and organizations around the world to better access vital information and other resources needed to improve food production and security for small-scale farmers and gardeners. 

ECHO in-house resources include ECHO Development Notes (EDN), ECHO Technical NotesECHO Best Practice NotesECHO Research Notes and Plant Information Sheets.  Presentations from ECHO Conferences are also provided.  Many of the plenary sessions are provided as complete video presentations.

March 3, 2020
Animal Feed Action Plan. FAO and IGAD 2019

East Africa Animal Feed Action Plan: Sustainably developing livestock-dependent livelihoods in East Africa

The East Africa Animal Feed Action Plan provides a guided approach to pave the way for the sustainable production of quality livestock and products, while improving competitiveness and profitability and ensuring appropriate feed resource management across East Africa. It also provides guidelines to communities, countries, the private sector and livestock stakeholders to optimally use available feed resources in order to increase the supply and quality of animals, products and by-products, and to maximize the economic and social benefits of the livestock subsector.


October 2, 2019
Mgheni et al., 2013

Chemical composition and nutritional values of feed resources for ruminants: Eastern and Central Africa (ECA) Table for Ruminants 2013

This feed table was generated from the feed resources data base established through the implementation of the project on Establishment of feed resources data base in Eastern and Central Africa implemented in Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda from January 2010 to December 2011. It summarizes available information on chemical composition, digestibility and energy values of locally available feed-stuff resources in the region.

September 2, 2019
Online fodder tree database for Europe

Online fodder tree database for Europe

This database contains more than 700 records from 100 tree species that are relevant for European conditions. The database allows selection of individual species, groups of species, and specific nutritional aspects of tree leaves.

July 16, 2019

USDA Food Composition Databases

This website allows you to search the USDA Food Composition Databases: USDA National Nutrient Database and USDA Branded Food Products Database. You can search the database by food item, food group, or manufacturer's name to find the nutrient information for your food items. You can also generate lists of foods sorted by nutrient content.

November 30, 2018
Ethiopia: feed inventory

Ethiopia: report on feed inventory and feed balance

This document presents an inventory and balance of feeds available in Ethiopia so that the country can be aware of its needs, resource availability, gaps, implications and how the gap can be filled within the country. This will make feed interventions in the country effective in the immediate, medium and long term as well as provide solutions for replication in the region.

October 22, 2018
World livestock: Transforming the livestock sector through the Sustainable Development Goals

World Livestock: Transforming the livestock sector through the Sustainable Development Goals

The livestock sector can play a key role in addressing, directly or indirectly, sustainable development goals (SDGs). While, for decades, the livestock debate has focused on how to increase production in a sustainable manner, the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development has added a new and broader dimension to the debate. It has shifted the emphasis of the conversation from fostering sustainable production per se, to enhancing the sector’s contribution to the achievement of the SDGs.

October 22, 2018
Technological innovation and education training in animal production with a focus on feeding and feed production

Technological Innovation and education training in animal production with a focus on feeding and feed production

Held within the Belt and Road Initiative, this document is the synthesis of a workshop organised to facilitate the communication of policy, technology, education and culture among the countries along the ‘Belt and Road’ route. It focuses on the development of novel ideas for the livestock sector development, building of a cooperation and exchange platform for livestock science and technology innovation, facilitation of the exchange of green livestock science and technology, promotion of mutual understanding and trust, advocation of the transformation and upgradation of livestock industry, and acceleration of the pace of livestock industry modernization.

August 7, 2018

Database of nutrient digestibility's of traditional and novel feed ingredients for trout and hybrid striped bass

This database is the result of project initiated in 2005 to determine apparent digestibility coefficients for macronutrients, amino acids and minerals for traditional and novel ingredients in rainbow trout and hybrid striped bass. 

March 1, 2018

Table 'Standardized ileal digestibility of amino acids in feedstuffs for poultry'

This document presents standardized ileal amino acid digestibility of feedstuffs for poultry derived from literature data on both ileal and standardized digestibilities.

February 23, 2018

Forages for the future

The newsletter, “Forages for the Futurelaunched in June 2016, resulted of a meeting of experts in October 2015 in Bonn, Germany, to discuss a Global Strategy for the Conservation and Utilization of Tropical and Subtropical Forage Genetic Resources. This newsletter is the 6th of the series. The former newsletters are available from http://goo.gl/vn9VZX. The newsletter is published under the auspices of the CGIAR Research Program “Genebanks”; its editors are Bruce Pengelly and Brigitte Maass, consultants of the Global Crop Diversity Trust.

February 8, 2018
Kyntäjä et al., 2014

Tables of composition and nutritional values of organically produced feed materials for pigs and poultry

This reports presents the composition and nutritive values for pigs and poultry of 40 organically produced feeds and roughages. Energy and protein values are provided according the French, Dutch, Danish, British, German and Swiss feed evaluation systems.

January 18, 2018
Métodos de pesquisa em nutrição de monogástricos

Métodos de pesquisa em nutrição de monogástricos

This book presents the concepts and experimental protocols used in monogastric nutrition research to determine the nutritional values and requirements for energy, protein, amino acids, minerals, and vitamins.

November 8, 2017

Biology and management of invasive apple snails

This newly published book on Biology and Management of Invasive Apple Snails provides updated information on Apple snails invasive status and on the ways to control them. The book includes a chapter on the use of invasive apple snails as feeds for farm animals written by Gilles Tran and Valérie Heuzé (Feedipedia team leaders). Free Download.

October 30, 2017
Ileal digestible amino acid values in feedstuffs for poultry

Ileal digestible amino acid values in feedstuffs for poultry

This RIRDC publication will be a useful resource for the poultry industry, especially nutritionists and those engaged in poultry protein and amino acid research as differences in amino acid digestibility can be effectively used to improve the precision of feed formulation.

October 3, 2017

Utilization of fruit and vegetable wastes as animal feed

These set of four videos describe processes to utilize baby corn byproducts and wastes, empty pea pods, kinnow waste and tomato pomace as livestock feed. Impact of their feeding on livestock productivity has also been illustrated.

July 17, 2017

FeedAccess: a software designed to optimize formulas at least cost for poultry, pigs and aquaculture species

FeedAccess provides a free formulation tool and access to an important raw material database and most common animal feed formulas used in livestock farming. FeedAccess is designed for layers, broilers, pigs and sows diets.

June 30, 2017

Animal Nutrition in FAO and Sustainable Development Goals

This document shows how animal nutrition can help achieving the 17 sustainable development goals in UNFAO Members States.

April 19, 2017

Livestock and climate change

This document is a compendium of FAO's work on climate change. It summarizes impacts of climate change on livestock and livestock smallholders and provides a wealth of information on the roles of livestock in climate change.

April 19, 2017

Comprehensive EU protein balance sheet

This document is the first comprehensive EU protein balance sheet. The sheet is an overview of total EU production, consumption and trade of all marketable sources of proteins used in animal feed production.The balance sheet shows the total protein needs in the EU, with EU production of cereals and oilseeds.
April 13, 2017

FAO Publications Catalogue 2017

This catalogue lists 485 books and brochures, it highlights not only the most recent publications, but also those that have become reference points in their respective fields.

April 10, 2017

CAM crops for a hotter and drier world: book of abstracts and symposium program

This book of abstracts presents an overview of recent developments in the use of CAM plants in drier conditions. It is divided into 7 sections:

  • Genetic resources and breeding of Opuntia
  • CAM plants as a source of forage and energy
  • Towards a hotter and drier world: ecophysological adaptations of Opuntia and new CAM crops
  • Fruit production: orchard and fruit management
  • Agro-industrial uses of CAM crops
  • Pharmaceutical uses of CAM-crops and Cochineal
  • Rural development and marketing
April 6, 2017

Mulberry, moringa and tithonia in animal feed, and other uses. Results in Latin America and the Caribbean

This document collates available information on foliage production and use in different animal production systems in Latin American and the Caribbean countries and make it available to other areas for possible application. This document also presents industrial, food and pharmaceutical applications of different products from the three plants. It is expected that this document will promote wider use of the foliage from these plants as animal feed worldwide.
March 21, 2017

FAO Ration tool for dairy cows - FAO : Outil de rationnement pour vaches laitières - FAO : Herramienta de racionamiento para vacas lecheras

This FAO Ration Formulation Tool (downloadable below) will assist you in preparing the least cost ration for milking cows using locally available resources. It has been specifically designed for techinicians looking for a simple and easy to use formulation tool.

March 16, 2017

The future of food and agriculture – Trends and challenges

This book presents the results of 2017 FAO's assessment of main trends and challenges for the future of food and agriculture. It contributes to a common understanding of the major long-term trends and challenges that will determine the future of food security and nutrition, rural poverty, the efficiency of food systems, and the sustainability and resilience of rural livelihoods, agricultural systems and their natural resource base. It is aimed at mobilizing concrete and concerted actions that will contribute to both 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

March 10, 2017

Blueprints for tropical dairy farming : Increasing Domestic Milk Production in Developing Countries 

This recently published manual covers a wide range of topics primarily related to ensuring the sustainability of dairy production systems in tropical developing countries.  This book is written for all the stakeholders in dairy production systems in the tropics, with an emphasis on South and East Asian countries.  However they are equally relevant to tropical dairy
industries in Africa and Central America. In addition, it provides guidelines for the Best Management Practices (BMP) of large scale, more intensive dairy systems.  While small holders are the major suppliers of milk in the tropics, numerous larger farms are becoming established throughout the tropics to satisfy the increasing local demands for fresh milk.  Both types of farmers and their advisers will gain much from this manual and improve the productivity, welfare and milk quality from their dairy herds.  Policy makers and senior management should also benefit from reading selected chapters.

Accessing each chapter for free

Each chapter has been written as a “stand alone” document, which can be individually downloaded from the Internet.  For this reason, there may be some degree of repetition between chapters but this has been kept to a minimum.

Each chapter of this manual can be downloaded for free from http://www.publish.csiro.au/ebook/8891

February 17, 2017

State-of-the-art on detoxification of Jatropha curcas products aimed for use as animal and fish feed: A review article

Recently contributed by Harinder Makkar, this article deals with processes that can be applied to jatropha products to decrease phorbol esters toxicity and promote tehir use as animal feeds. It highlights the need for animal feeding studies in order to prove efficiency of detoxification.

The following link will provide free access to the above article, and is valid until December 11, 2016.


After this date, the full article can be requested from the author.

October 24, 2016
Proficiency testing of feed constituents

Proficiency testing of feed constituents: a comparative evaluation of european and developing country laboratories and its implications for animal production

A new article by Makkar et al., 2016 providing results from a 2-year (2014-2015) worldwide survey on comparative evaluation of European and developing country laboratories for proficiency testing of feed constituents. The following link will provide free access to the above article to first 50 clicks http://pubs.acs.org/doi/pdf/10.1021/acs.jafc.6b02452. Should you are not one of the first 50 users of the above link, you may request the full article from the author.

October 23, 2016

Sustainable grassland and pasture management in Asia

This volume is based on the discussions of the Regional Consultation on the Sustainable Grassland and Pasture Management in Asia, held at Lanzhou University, Lanzhou in November 2015. The consultation was organized jointly by - FAO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, Animal Production and Health Division (AGA) of FAO, the Animal Production and Health Commission for Asia and the Pacific (APHCA), Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock (GASL) and Lanzhou University. 

August 17, 2016

Techfit feed technology prioritization tool

TechFit is a tool to advise smallholder livestock keepers on feed technologies. TechFit is a simple, practical discussion tool that non-experts can use to inform the selection of the most appropriate technologies in specific locations and contexts.  Techfit encompasses a series of "Techsheets", extension material which provides summarized information on the situations where the feeding technology is best suited.


August 3, 2016

CactusNet Regional Meetings: An international cactus pear workshop on the Development of a cactus pear agro‐industry for the sub‐Sahara Africa region

The CactusNet Regional Meetings' page encompasses links to the proceedings and slides presented during the international cactus pear workshop on the development of a cactus pear agro‐industry for the sub‐Sahara Africa region.

May 9, 2016

Feeding dairy cattle in the Tropics: a manual for trainers and practitioners

This document provides information and tools for trainers and practitioners working with smallholders dairy farmers in tropical Asia. It gives clear explanations on dairy cows digestive system and their needs. The document provides many examples of feeds and diets that can be successfully fed to enhance milk production. Feeding of new born calves and heifers is also considered in the document.

April 6, 2016

Insects for food and feed

This FAO website aims at providing information (articles, books, proceedings, and videos) on the use and rearing of insects for food and feeds. It gathers information from different initiatives in the world and provides legal updates related to the use of insects. 

March 30, 2016


GLEAM-i (Global Livestock Environmental Assessment Model-interactive) is a new, user-friendly tool developed by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) for estimating greenhouse gas emissions in the livestock sector. The GLEAM-i tool can be downloaded from the following address, http://www.fao.org/gleam/resources/en/. The user guide is downloadable below

March 23, 2016

FAO's Feed and Feeding for Farmer's (3F) video competition for young researchers from developing countries: a selection of 11 videos

In 2014, FAO invited PhD students and young researchers from developing countries working in the area of animal nutrition to participate in a video competition to share information on promising animal nutrition technologies or interventions that will contribute to improved feeding of livestock. Discover 11 selected videos from the competition below:

March 4, 2016

Greenhouse gas emissions from pig and chicken supply chains: A global life cycle assessment

This report presents results from an assessment carried out to improve the understanding of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions along livestock supply chains. It provides a detailed analysis of emissions according to region, sector and systems of production.

February 9, 2016

Grass strips against soil erosion

This farmer-to-farmer video, developed through funding by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) by CIAT and Agro-Insight, explains in a clear and simple way the agricultural technique to plant grass strips on sloping land to prevent soil erosion. The videos are prepared to deepen farmer’s understanding of the technical aspects of improved soil management, and at the same time, to prompt discussion within the local context.

February 3, 2016

Seaweeds for livestock diets: A review

This document is the result of the Feedipedia team's review on the use of seaweeds in livestock feeding. It provides information on nutritive value and gives some feeding recommendations for each class of farm animals.

January 19, 2016

Climate change and food security: risks and responses

This document provides an overview of the cascading impacts of climate change on food security and nutrition, from physical impacts on agro-ecosystems to livelihoods and food security.

January 19, 2016

Risk profile related to production and consumption of insects as food and feed

This document presents the conclusions of the EFSA Panel of experts on contaminants after the assessment of the risks regarding potential biological and chemical hazards as well as allergenicity and environmental hazards associated with the use of farmed insects as food and feed.

January 11, 2016

Risks for human and animal health related to the presence of phorbol esters in Jatropha kernel meal

This document presents the conclusions of the EFSA Panel of experts on contaminants after the assessment of the risks for human and animal health related to the presence of phorbol esters (PEs) in jatropha kernel meal.

January 6, 2016
Taguchi et Makkar, 2015

Issues and options for crop-livestock integration in peri-urban settings

This paper deals with how crop-livestock integration in peri-urban settings can improve animal productions and help increasing nutrients recycling. Environmental issues due to livestock and need for environmental policy are pointed out.


December 11, 2015

A shift in global perspective institutionalizing farmer field school

The Farmers Field Schools approach has been very successful and witnessed a strong expansion in many areas.  However, the adoption of FFS in national extension often remains problematic. This paper aims to analyse opportunities, challenges and implications of institutionalizing FFS at the national level.

December 4, 2015

Ten lessons from biotechnology experiences in crops, livestock and fish for smallholders in developing countries

August 24, 2015
Dubeux, 2011. Use of cactus for livestock feeding

Use of cactus for livestock feeding

This document presents some information on cactus production and utilization based on the Brazilian experience. It includes videos that can also be watched on Feedipedia's YouTube channel.

May 9, 2015
Tran et al., 2015. Animal Frontiers, 5 (2): 37-44

Insects in fish diets

This new Feedipedia paper presents the rearing, composition, nutritional value and use of insects such as black soldier fly larvae, housefly maggots, mealworms, locusts and silkworms as a replacement of soybean meal and fish meal in the diet of fish.

April 8, 2015
Moran et al., 2015. CSIRO Publishing

Cow talk : Understanding dairy cow behaviour to improve their welfare on Asian farms

The aim of this manual is to improve the welfare of dairy cattle in tropical developing countries, and by doing so, optimise cow and herd performance. It gives the stockmen and farmers directly concerned with the cattle a better understanding of animal behaviour and the ways cattle communicate their comfort or distress.

April 8, 2015