HYDERABAD: Veter­inary experts and economists at a workshop described dairy and livestock industry as the “fastest growing sector” in terms of poverty alleviation and economic growth. They proposed that farmers should be trained to reap financial benefits from meat, milk and by-products of small and large animals. They urged research institutions and experts to conduct a joint research and organise awareness campaigns.

They were speaking at the concluding ceremony of the three-day workshop at Sindh Agriculture University (SAU), Tandojam, on Saturday. It was organised in collaboration with the University of Veterinary Sciences (UOVS) and Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) of the University of Melbourne for development of dairy, milk and meat products and rearing of small animals in Pakistan. Directors, deputy directors and senior veterinary officers of the department were trained under the “Dairy Beef Project” to improve the economic condition of low-income families and small animal farmers.

SAU vice chancellor Dr Fateh Mari told the participants that cattle farming could change economic condition and lifestyle of poor families.

He said farmers should be trained in various technologies for the production of dairy, beef and mutton as well as animal farming on a regular basis that would enable them to earn sufficient income, especially keeping in view the needs of domestic and foreign markets. He also called for awareness of indigenous breeding of animals.

The VC said that Sindh had better breeds of cattle which would increase productivity of dairy and livestock sector in Pakistan so as to increase demand for meat, milk, leather and their by-products in the halal market of the world.

Dr Hassan Mehmood Waraich, project team leader, said that main objective of this workshop was to help small farmers with beneficial results of dairy technology and meat through trained experts and create best resources and personal business opportunities for their economic uplift.

Project Manager Ms Humaira Iqbal said that during training workshop, experts and participants were briefed about various modules related to dairy technology, beef value chain and applied research in Pakistan. She drew their attention towards small production systems.

Abdul Aziz, training manager, and Aijaz Kumbhar, provincial coordinator Dairy Beef Project, said the livestock department was included in the programme so that technology could be transferred to small farmers and domestic animal rearing families could benefit from it.

The speakers underscored the need for research support for the improvement and development of livestock and small animals between the SAU and ACIAR’s project.

Published in Dawn, January 2nd, 2022

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