Nigerian Veterinary Medical Association, NVMA in Anambra state has urged Governor Willie Obiano to create the Ministry of Animal Health and Production to help re-position the livestock industry in the state.
The chairman of the association, Dr Damian Uchenabo made the call at a livestock exposition organised for livestock farmers in Awka yesterday saying, “We want government to look into the micro-economic benefits of livestock production and other social benefits by first creating a ministry of health and production.
“This will put confidence on the investors in the livestock sub-sector and greatly assist farmers with chain value addition to livestock products in the state.
“Powdered egg concentrates used for ice-cream as well as fish flavor/sauce used in biscuit making and various food preparations which could be produced locally are still being imported into the country.
“The association is also moving for the establishment of Maize Triangle for both beef and fresh milk production,” Uchenabo said.
The chairman appealed to the state government to assist livestock farmers save millions of naira usually lost in the course of producing perishable livestock products like meat, eggs, fish and fresh milk.
He also appealed to the government to establish veterinary department in each of the 21 local government areas of the state for prompt animal disease reporting and surveillance.
Uchenabo said that the association was faced with challenges of lack of standard abattoirs, obsolete and weak veterinary laws, lack of animal diagnostic laboratory and absence of cold stores for vaccines storage.
Earlier, the state Commissioner for Agriculture, Mr. Afam Mbanefo, assured that the state government was poised to assist and partner with organisations to boost agricultural production and discourage waste.
Mbanefo, who was represented by Mr. Mark Ezebialu, said that the government was providing loans and grants to credible farmers to embark on meaningful agricultural development projects.
According to him, “Tractors and agro-inputs are also made available at affordable rates to assist farmers.”
The theme of the workshop was “Chain Value Addition in Livestock Production,” aimed at seeking ways on how farmers could add value to end products.