Kenya meat expo 2021, achievement for food security for big 4 agenda
PS Harry Kimtai of State Department for Livestock, gives his key remarks at the Meat Expo 2021 at KICC, Nairobi
Livestock sector is one of the targeted areas under vision 2030 to achieve the projected development milestones of economic pillar. The sector supports over 20% of our population, provides employment, produces raw materials for agro industries, earns foreign exchange through export of live animals and products, and it also contributes significantly to the national food and nutrition security of our country.
In the year 2021, under the public private partnerships intiatives to promote meat sector, the state Department for Livestock partnered with Kenya Market Trust, Nation Media Group, the Retail Trade Assocition of Kenya and the Kenya meat and livestock exports industry council, to organise a Kenya meat Expo 2021. The event which was celebrated on 18th and 19th of november 2021, at the Kenyatta international conference centre( KICC), was a big success to the livestock department, apart from being a milestone event to the ministry and the Government of Kenya.
It was when, the event brought together processors, retailers, policy makers, other meat value chain actors and consumers, to deepen their awareness on production and consumption of quality meat.
The meat Expo 2021 was therefore organised to showcase on what the National and County Governments and other meat industry stakeholders have been doing to improve on meat production, it’s quality assurance, marketing and trade, services such as finance and insurance regulation and research to improve on its consumption and trade. The theme for the 2021 meat Expo was “Safe Meat For Nutrition Health And Wealth Creation.”
PS Harry Kimtai being taken round at the Kenya Meat commission slaughter house in Athi River.
Livestock principal secretary Harry Kimtai, who officiated the event on behalf of the CS Peter Munya remarked in his key address to the attendants, that to demaonstrate the importance attached by the Government ro the meat industry reforms, institutional governance have been put in place for the livestock sector. The most recent reform is the policy of the section No3 of the 2020 on national livestock policy, sessional no.2 of 2020 on veterinary policy, agriculture insurance policy and other livestock commodity based policies and strategies.
“the sessional paper No.3 of 2020 on national policy recommended that the government develop a comprehensive livestock masterplan whose preparatiion is already on-going,” PS added.
Kimtai also observed that for good gorvance and prudent mangement of financial resources, the government re-organized and re-assigned functions and management of institutions handling livestock issues including the Kenya meat commission, Kenya animal genetic resources center , Kenya agricultre and livestock research organization. This was aimed at improving their efficiency and effectiveness in service delivery to livestock farmers.
Further, the PS added that in promoting the meat sector growth by the private sector, the govern ment has made changes in provision of grants to SMEs and has created a possibiltyof public private sector partnerships. The changes are contained in the big 4 agenda and have been allocate resources.
And to prepare and expand markets for livestock beyond our borders, the government allocated 3 billion shillings towards developing a berth for export of livestock, creation of quarantine centres and enhancing the ongoing works of the disease free zones along the coastal region including Bachuma.
Ethical practices in the meat industry
As a trading commodity therefore, meat must be subjected to regulatory instruments that will ensure that its trade is carried out fairly. The regulatory instruments for trade have to ensure that issues of grading, standardization, labelling of dates of processing and expiry among others are spelt out and sanctions are put in place to discipline the errant value chain actors through an established governance system.
There is need to ensure that meat production, processing, storage and transportation is safeguarded throughout the whole value chain with a well-established and functional regulatory and institutional framework. Meat is a sensitive animal product and therefore it’s production, processing, handling and preparation for human consumption should be done in a highly regulated and controlled environment, using strict standards set universally to ensure human safety.
The Kenya Meat Expo-Event is now planned to be held annually and will be part part of the Livestock week.