KP Livestock Farmers Welfare Association
KP Livestock Farmers Convention 2019: KP-LFWA has been serving the community since 1990s. Recently the KP Livestock Farmers Convention 2019 was held at Animal Husbandry Ins-service Training Institute, Peshawar http://dairysciencepark.org.pk/lpfc/. The Convention was supported by Livestock& Dairy Development Department (L&DD) Extension and Research Wings, Pakistan Veterinary Medical Association (PVMA), Pakistan Poultry Association (PPA), Fisheries Department (FD), Faculty of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Sciences, UA Peshawar (UAP), Poultry Doctors Forum (PDF), Poultry Dealers Association (PDA), Dairy Science Park (DSP) Peshawar and KP Chamber of Commerce and Industries (KPCCI) Peshawar.
The objectives of the convention were to show the smallholder farmers in particular and commercial farmers in general, the recent advancements in field of livestock and poultry sectors. Adopting these practices by farmers will improve livestock productivity and reduce operational cost incurring at farms. Furthermore, the civil society and particular the youth were encouraged to take on livestock& poultry farming as livelihood source, resulting in reduced rates of unemployment in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The subsistence livestock farms and majority of commercial farms have management practices in a primitive stage and application of modern technology is almost lacking. The farmers have no or little knowledge of best farming practices to improve their productively.Hopefully this farmers’ convention will help them to acquire up-to-date knowledge and switch to the advance farming practices.
The Convention comprised of lectures deliver by prominent livestock and poultry experts on recent advancements accomplished in different areas of veterinary and poultry sectors. Stalls were installed by national and multinational companies of livestock, poultry and fishery involved in sale/promotion of feed, medicine, vaccine, semen, fodder seed, diagnostic equipment, dairy technology equipment, general machinery and equipment, farm record software, veterinary books sellers etc. Public sector departments and universities exhibited their products and services through stalls. Scheduled banks demonstrate credits facilities provided to the farmers. Healthy animals competitions were held for all species of livestock. Milk production competition among all species and particularly cattle and buffaloes were held. The Ministers for Agriculture, Finance and other dignitaries participated in the event as Chief Guests and Guests of Honor. Total delegates exceeded 5000, including 100 commercial companies.
Price capping and policy issues: KP-LFWA wrote a letter dated 30-3-2019 addressed to Mr Jehangir Tareen of the ruling Party of the country, Tehreek I Insaaf, highlighting economic importance of the livestock sector. Deficiency of KP in milk and meat production were mentioned as 80%, met out through imports from Punjab. They referred to the price control as per NWFP Foodstuff Control Order 1975, whereas the District Magistrate in consultation with the District Committee or otherwise, fixes prices of foodstuffs for different localities of the District. They clarified that as the inputs including animals, feeds, fodders, medicines, labor, etc are not controlled or subsidized by the Government, there seems no justification to control the prices of milk and meat. The issue has been raised by the Association many times at various fora.
The KP Livestock Policy 2018 has mentioned price capping of milk and meat as the biggest hurdle in development of the livestock sector and adulteration of food items supplied to the consumers. The Association requested in the above referred letter for decapping pricing of milk and meat and allowing the concerned association for price determination on the analogy of poultry, vegetable, sweets, etc, with no government control.
The Association mentioned in the letter that 70% of the farms are at mercy of private money lenders and animal dealers. If a farmer can not pay back the loan, the lenders can take away their animals, home or even families. Their markup rate is about 50% per annum and default rate is zero. They suggested long term loans on soft terms to be given to farmers with a significant role of the Association in the lending and recovery process. They desired Bank of Khyber to launch farmers’ friendly schemes.
Availability of adulterated milk to the people of KP was identified as a bigger public health issue resulting in illness of the people. Such milk come from outside due to shortage of milk in the province. The cheaper rates of such milk attract the consumers.
In 2005, the local government launched buffalos’ colonies to be set in Peshawar, Mardan and DI Khan areas. The Association mentioned in the letter than only some work was initiated in DI Khan. They demanded to set up milk villages around major cities, through allotment of plots to farmers on soft terms, establishment of labor colonies, product markets, veterinary hospitals manned 24 hours, milk and meat processing plants, etc.
CPEC was mentioned as an important opportunity for local economy. The growing Chinese food demands, and especially Halal Food for the Muslim population, can be met out through productivity improvement and commercialization of the livestock resources in the province. The Chinese transportation system while returning back, can take milk, meat and other livestock based food products to China.
The Association appreciated the Vision of the Prime Minister Imran Khan and offered their support to implement the Vision of Self Reliance and utilization of livestock and poultry resources for generation of millions of jobs and exportable surpluses for economic revival of the country.
On 10-4-2019 the Association approached the Director General Food Safety and Halal Food Authority KP and mentioned that highly adulterated milk is filling the gap on cost of local dairy farming. Occurrence of hepatitis B and other abdominal diseases were attributed to consumption of such adulterated milk. They stressed on overcoming this issue in the interest of the local farming system.
The Association offered opening of model milk shops at different locations for selling pure milk as a joint venture with the Authority. These shops would be registered and regulated and may be considered as a source of decent employment in line with the Vision of the Prime Minister.
On 24-4-2019 the Association wrote a letter to Secretary Agriculture, Government of KP. They highlighted the issue of price capping of milk and meat while prices of the farm inputs were not regulated. They mentioned that the KP Agricultural Policy 2005 and Livestock Policy 2018 emphasized on deregulation of milk and meat prices on the analogy of poultry and vegetables. They complained that their application for price increase was pending with the Deputy Commissioner since two months and so many meetings with the Assistant Commissioner were not productive. They requested for bank financing of farming activities on soft terms. Adulterated milk coming from outside KP, pressurizing the local farming community was mentioned as an impeding factor in growth and survival of farms in KP. Establishing Milk Villages and harvesting economic opportunities under CPEC were requested.
The cost of milk produced per kg at Peshawar, was assessed as Rs.132 notified by the Association on 2-5-2019, based upon the depreciation of animal’s cost, management cost and feeding cost. The exercise was supervised by Dr Masood District Director Peshawar and Consumers Committee and put forward to Assistant Commissioner. In a press release on 17-7-2019, the Association mentioned the price fixation as the main issue of the farming community. Later on a meeting was held on the directives of the Chief Secretary KP with the Director General Livestock and Dairy Development KP, Dr Sher Muhammad on 4-7-2019. The minutes were issued on 4-7-2019. Notification of the revised prices were still awaited.
Senior Executives of KP-LFWA met to consider the emerging challenges faced by the stakeholders across the livestock based food value chain. The Directorate Generals of Livestock and Dairy Development Department Extension and Research Wings and the University of Agriculture Peshawar doing their jobs well to provide routine extension, research and educational needs of the sector. However, most of the activities mentioned under the KP Rules of Business, could not be covered.
In addition, many new issues have aroused which need to be considered at higher level.. Achieving the targets require inputs from the Directorate General Livestock and Dairy Development Department, Extension and Research Wings, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the University of Agriculture Peshawar and the private sector, including livestock and poultry farmers, meat, milk and feed processors and representatives of women, under umbrella of an autonomous body. Establishment of Livestock Technopark Peshawar was suggested under an Act of the Provincial Assembly of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The Technopark will have full legislative, financial and administrative powers and would be backed up by an Endowment Fund.
Contact: KP Livestock Farmers Welfare Association, Building 83, Near Jinah Islamia College for boys Main Saryab Road, Faqirabad, Tel. 091-258-3480