Ethiopian Livestock Feeds Project Synthesis Meeting

28-29 May 2012
Addis Ababa

The Value Chain Anaysis (VCA)

The tool seems to be missing differentiation of consumer preferences, how does one indentify field technologies to deal with some attributes?
Constraints analysis issues
- skill and knowledge of farmers need to be considered with the tools
- research and other institutions that have been put by the government should be mentioned/considered in the analysis
- do the people / field offices have sufficient knowledge to work with farmers and pass the information
Key problems in small ruminants as identified by research are 1. Fertility 2. Young mortality 3.slow growth rate, the tools need to also consider these 3 variables
Does the tool take into consideration marketing and export marketing?
Problem of availability of forage seeds mentioned might not be a critical problem at least not in Debra Zeit
The tool is not specific to commodity, this can overcome the time constrain challenge
Concerns over the issues of tools relying in the memory of the farmers
Tools should not be as quantitative as they are shown to be

Feed assessment tool (FEAST)
What does the improvement of Artificial Insemination (IA) mean in the FEAST tool?
Feed technology prioritization (Techfit)
How can local knowledge be optimized in the development of these tools?
Concerns over the attributes of the tools that might not be specific enough
Lack of clarity in each Kabele
The ranking used in the methodology is an issue of concern and need improvement
Methodology – some cross-cutting across the tools
- Concerns over the issue of scoring and averaging scores based on extreme values that could lead to misleading information
- How was the sample size selection justified in the various tools
- Was there statistical support in the data analysis
- The aspect of conservation was lacking in the methodology in the FEAST tool
Did focus groups discussions and collective responses influence responses in a particular direction? How was uniformity of responses achieved?
Did the researchers ask about what farmer interventions worked before?
Water availability should be included in the analysis
Next phase of the project can look into maximizing local tools and methods
Application of tools
- How is the application of the tools envisaged
- Who should be responsible for this
- How can the tools be used in the projects and what level of expertise is required to use the tools
- application of the tools needs to be developed side by side with the tool
The tools generally have a holistic approach
There should be a consideration on the commercial feed side

Reactions to the above issues
There is a strong need for IA to be strengthened at village level so as to be effective to the farmers as IA technicians face numerous challenges when administering IA services
Some of the methodology questions raised are well addressed in the detailed reports
Concentrates of the different feed resources have been captured in the focus groups discussions
The TechFit tool was able to capture what was working before for their study
TechFit tool is context specific to the farmer, region and other specifications
The VCA tool is widely applicable and has different implications for target farmers
FEAST methodology: the issue of dominance of farmers in focus groups was addressed through pre-testing the tools and training of researchers so as to capture reliable information
Seasonality was handled in feed aspect
- Development projects; the tools are an opportunity for guiding researcher before carrying out intervention projects
- Small holders; proposed intervention is seen to be relevant to the farmer since the information collected came from the farmers and designed for their needs