The livestock sector is a major contributor to rural livelihoods and the national economies of Burkina Faso, Nigeria, and Senegal, yet productivity remains low. This is largely due to poor husbandry practices, inadequate feed and water, the prevalence of various animal diseases, poor extension services, and inadequate infrastructure and limited market access. These countries are unable to meet the growing domestic demand for animal source foods, and therefore rely on expensive imports, or fully exploit the intra-regional trade opportunities in West Africa. This impairs the contribution of the livestock sector to food security, poverty reduction, and puts pressure on the natural resources base fuelling conflicts and insecurity. This situation is further exacerbated by climate change, increased variability, and extreme weather conditions.
Improving adaptation of the livestock sub-sector to the climate change risks is therefore an imperative for achieving increased livestock production and productivity, transforming them into quality food for animal and human consumption, accessing markets for final products and integrating the various links in the value chains, and improving the resilience of target populations to climate shocks and vulnerable situations. Smallholders can be supported to accelerate their adoption of climate smart agricultural technologies in a sustainable manner by applying digital technologies which have the potential to increase livestock productivity and raise producer incomes. Digital technologies hold great potential in accelerating adaptation in local and remote rural areas where livestock production occurs. There is therefore a need to mainstream digital solutions for climate change adaptation in the design of livestock sector development projects.
This assessment will generate knowledge on climate change related risks, adaptation needs and opportunities in the cattle, small ruminants, and poultry value chains, existence of digital enablers, and usage of digital technologies in West Africa with a focus on Burkina Faso, Nigeria and Senegal.
The main objective is to ensure accelerated adaptation by smallholders to a changing climate, thereby enhancing food security and resilience of livestock keepers in West Africa.