The Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) said on Tuesday it has provided seven feed mills to Liberian livestock farmers to enhance and increase their livestock -poultry and piggery -productions that will reduce the country’s reliance on poultry and pig meat imports.
Hammer mills, as they are also called, process, grind corn and other feeds into smaller grains to improve digestibility for livestock.
The Ministry in a press release said, the feed mills were purchased through a donor-funded project under the MoA in 2015 and had accumulated dust and spider web over the years, but were not given to farmers.
“Liberian livestock producers have been heavily dependent on processing feeds manually sometimes; but most times, import feeds from neighboring countries which are costly.
The lack of hammer mills impairs those producers’ abilities to increase their poultry and piggery outputs,” the release from the Ministry said.
Agriculture Minister, Jeanine M. Cooper, said on Tuesday as she handed over the mills, “They should not be used for personal use, but you must share them with other smaller producers around you to help increase their productions too”.
Association of Liberian Livestock Producers, Inc. (ALLPI), received five mills and a cassava grater. The group is an umbrella organization of poultry, pork, small ruminant (goat & sheep), cattle, and other animal producers.
ALLPI’s five mills are meant for their members in Bomi, Bong, and Montserrado counties. Each beneficiary has an average of 300 pigs and 1500 poultry layers on their respective farms.
Graincoast Feeds in Bomi and SAMJAC Agro-Industry in Margibi also received a mill each.
Aaron Marshall, in his response to the donation on behalf of the association, expressed delight and said the presentation of the feed mills was an excellent help from the Ministry of Agriculture.
He said if they produce more feeds, we will produce more eggs, more chicken, and more pigs on the Liberian market.
“This is really an empowerment for us,” he said amidst cheers from other recipients.
Desktop researches put Liberia’s eggs import at an estimated US$ 5.3 million, poultry meat stood at US$22.5 and pig meat was US$ 2.82 million just in 2018.
The MoA’s support to livestock producers is meant to firstly boost their income capacity to provide jobs and minimize the importation of livestock to Liberia.