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Linking fodder to livestock markets in Vietnam– the Ea Kar experience Werner Stür & Truong Tan Khanh FAP Symposium on Feed in Smallholder Systems LuangPrabang, Laos, 18-19 November 2010
Can smallholder farmers benefit from the growing demand for higher quality meat in urban markets? Q: Urban meat markets source meat from commercial producers and imports of live animals and chilled or frozen meat. meat standards are growing; e.g. Ho Chi Minh City: <3 years old; body condition score 4-4.5; >300 kg slaughter weight). Smallholder producers Grow and sell animals for local markets, which have low meat quality standards. Any age and size is fine, but producers receive payment for the estimated amount of meat on the carcass so fatter animals receive a higher price. There is a huge gap between what urban markets demand and what smallholders (can) produce.
The Ea Kar experience (1) Situation in 2000: Traditional cattle production had become less and less attractive as a farm enterprise: decreasing grazing lands (feed resources) increased labour requirements to supervise grazing decreasing animal productivity Cattle produced for and sold in the local market Step 1 (stimulating interest): Planted forages Farmers saved labour and were paid more for their fatter cattle on the local market They could see a future for cattle production and many started to ‘Buy thin – Sell fat’
The Ea Kar experience (2) Step 2 (new markets): New markets for fat cattle in provincial urban centres such as Buon Ma Thuot Saturation of local market? Local traders found that urban provincial markets had strong demand for fat cattle Producers continued to modified their production systems Local government saw the potential of cattle production for the economic development of Ea Kar district, and invested in livestock development (ie. extension, policy, credit) Scaling out
The Ea Kar experience (3) Step 3: Producing and marketing beef to city markets and restaurants Traders developed marketing linkages with big city traders (high meat standards) A local slaughter house started to deliver chilled meat to the restaurant market in Nha Trang Production changes including new breeds and further management improvements Farmers formed cattle production groups and signed supply contracts with city traders Scaling out
Ea Kar in 2010 3100 HH planted forages (30% of all cattle producers in the district) 532 HH were fattening cattle for urban and city markets, and 800 HH produced cross-bred and Laisind calves 44 farmers clubs had been established with a focus on cattle production, and 3 farmer clubs had contracts with city traders Farmers formed the ‘Ea Kar Beef Cattle Producer Association’ Cattle and beef were sold to (1) local market, (2) provincial market, and (3) several city markets.
Gaps, work still to be done Assist the “Ea Kar beef cattle production association” to become an effective producer organisation Trade mark development: ‘Ea Kar beef’ Continue scaling out to nearby districts Provide support for research and development to enhance competitiveness of smallholder beef production Strengthen AI capacity, build capacity for cattle breed planning and scale out improved beef production to more districts Research on relationship between feeding, breeds and beef quality
Conclusions YES - smallholders were able to change their production system to produce cattle that meet the quality requirements of urban markets, AND - local traders were able to gain access urban markets BUT - this transformation occurred in small increments with improvements in production and development of market opportunities going hand-in-hand.