Kenya is set to establish a beef federation that will play a significant role in enhancing the country’s meat export to the international market.

Cooperative and Micro and Small Enterprise Cabinet Secretary, Simon Chelugui, says the establishment of the Kenya Federation of Beef aims to revolutionise the livestock industry across Kenya.

Mr Chelugui said the government has received support from the World Bank, with funds allocated through the Kenya Devolution Support Program (KDC) and the Ministry of Agriculture.

“This financial backing underscores the government’s commitment to realising the ambitious project, aimed at not only transforming the livestock industry but also addressing historical marginalization in certain regions of Kenya,” said Mr Chelugui.

The federation will implement four to five feedlots in 29 counties, ushering in a coordinated approach to the feeding, fattening, and releasing of the animals to the market.

Mr Chelugui stressed the need for a seamless operation within the cooperative, indicating that the federation’s objectives extend beyond mere livestock management.

The envisioned federation will actively engage in market sourcing, slaughter coordination, and overall animal aggregation.

Drawing parallels with successful models in other agricultural sectors, such as the Kenya Planters’ Cooperative Union (KPCU) for coffee and the Kenya Tea Development Agency (KTDA) for tea, the federation aims to replicate logistical efficiency.

Highlighting the significance of this approach, the CS provided an example scenario wherein the federation could efficiently handle an order of one million kilos of beef.

The federation would promptly liaise with respective counties, assess the readiness of available animals, and coordinate the export process seamlessly, irrespective of their origin.

To ensure standardised animal feeding practices within the feedlots, Chelugui outlined the involvement of key entities such as KAGRIC, KEVEVAPI, and the State Department of Livestock in the production phase.

The Minister said the State Department of Cooperatives is designated to play a pivotal role in member aggregation and the provision of essential infrastructure for feedlots, while counties are expected to contribute by providing vital extension services.

As the discussions progress, the Cooperative and Micro and Small Enterprise Cabinet Secretary expressed optimism about the positive impact of the initiative.

By participating in and aggregating feedlots, the government aims to uplift marginalised areas, marking a significant stride toward inclusive and sustainable development in Kenya.

gandae@businessdayafrica.org