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Journal of Agricultural Science and Technology A 2 (2012) 1127-1133 Earlier title: Journal of Agricultural Science and Technology, ISSN



Role of Livestock Sector in the Socio-Economic Uplift of the Rural Pakistan

Tunio Muhammad Tarique, Shuming Yang, Mohsina Zubair, Jing Qiu, Gang Chen and Ailiang Chen
Institute of Quality Standards and Testing Technology for Agro Products, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Key Lab of Agri-food Safety and Quality, Ministry of Agriculture, Beijing 100081, China Received: July 31, 2012 / Published: October 20, 2012. Abstract: Livestock sector occupies a very crucial position in the economy of Pakistan. The sector is equally important in irrigation as well as in arid/rain fed areas. Based on the valid reasons and available data, some scientists believe that livestock can strengthen and boost-up the economy of the rain fed/arid lands like Pothowar plateau where other enterprises like crops do not flourish and witness success due to drought and uncertain weather conditions. In this article, an attempt has been made to establish the role of livestock rearing in both the high and low potential areas. Their role in the overall economy of the country has been highlighted. Also many constraints in livestock business have been identified. The livestock sector in Pakistan has tremendous potential for growth. Therefore, a workable strategy for the promotion of the livestock has been outlined to uplift the rural economy and improve the socio-economic conditions of the rural dweller of the country. Key words: Role, livestock, socio-economic, rural Pakistan.

1. Introduction
In Pakistan livestock sector contributes almost 50% to the value addition in the agriculture sector, and almost 11% to country GDP, which is higher than the contribution made by the crop sector (47.4% in agriculture and 10.3% in GDP). The role of livestock sector in the rural economy of Pakistan is very critical as 30-35 million rural population of the country are engaged for their livelihood. Within the livestock sector, milk is the largest and the single most important commodity. Despite decade of neglect, Pakistan is the fifth largest milk producer in the world. The total value of milk produced is higher than the value of two major crops which is wheat and cotton [1]. The statistics produced by the government agencies establishes that livestock plays a pivotal role in the agricultural economy of Pakistan. Agriculture
Corresponding author: Tunio Muhammad Tarique, Ph.D., research fields: animal sciences, poultry nutrition and molecular biology. E-mail: tarique_tunio@hotmail.com.

contributes 24.5% to the GDP, employs 50% of the labor force, provides livelihood to 75% of the population and about 60% of export earnings. The livestock sub sectors share in agriculture is around 40%, which amounts to 11.4% of the overall GDP [1, 2]. 1.1 Agricultural Economy of Pakistan at a Glance Agriculture remains the hub of Pakistans economy, which consists of crop and livestock products. Agriculture alone is responsible for about 67% of our foreign exchange earning directly or indirectly [3]. Moreover, this sector provides raw material to domestic agro based industries. 1.2 The Status of Livestock in the Country The country has been blessed with the best quality breeds of cattle. Some of the breeds are on the verge of vanishing. There is a great potential to conserve and promote indigenous breeds. Fig. 1 indicates that cattle happened to be the dominant animals among large


Role of Livestock Sector in the Socio-Economic Uplift of the Rural Pakistan

Province Wise Percent Distribution of Cattle

Provincw Wise Percent Distribution of Buffaloes

8 20 23 % 27 NWFP Punjab Sindh Balochistan 49 65 % NWFP Punjab Sindh Balochistan 1 7

(a) Province wise percent distribution of cattle

Provincw Wise Percent Distribution of Animals Sheep

(b) Province wise percent distribution of buffaloes

Provincw Wise Percent Distribution ofGoat





% 24

NWFP Punjab Sindh Balochistan 23

NWFP % Punjab Sindh Balochistan 37


(c) Province wise percent distribution of sheep

Province Wise Percent Distribution of Camels

(d) Province wise percent distribution of goat

Province Wise Percent Distribution of Mules



22 41 % NWFP Punjab Sindh Balochistan 30 52 24 % NWFP Punjab Sindh Balochistan

(e) Province wise percent distribution of camel

Province Wise Percent Distribution of Horses

(f) Province wise percent distribution of mules

Province Wise Percent Distribution of Asses



4 12 NWFP Punjab Sindh 41 Balochistan

% 13

NWFP Punjab Sindh Balochistan

% 43


(g) Province wise percent distribution of horse Fig. 1 Province wise percent distribution of animals [4].

(h) Province wise percent distribution of asses

Role of Livestock Sector in the Socio-Economic Uplift of the Rural Pakistan


ruminants while goat remained dominant among small ruminants in the country. Among the draft/traction animals, the population of asses was reportedly far ahead of other types of animals. The population of livestock varied by provinces, however, in the inter-provincial comparison, the number of cattle, buffaloes, goats, horses and assess exceeded in the Punjab while of sheep and camels in Balochistan and of mules in the NWFP.

2. The Potential of Livestock in the Development

Animals are a key source of income and food for many small farmers around the globe. The increasing demands for animal products also constitute an economic opportunity for many people. Livestock keeping is critical for many of the poor in the developing world, often contributing to multiple livelihood objectives and offering pathways out of poverty. Livestock keeping also affects an indispensable asset of the poor, their human capital, through its impact on their own nutrition and health. This paper outlines the linkages between livestock keeping and the physical well-being of the poor, and examines a number of commonly held beliefs that misrepresent livestock development issues related to these linkages. These beliefs limit the scope of intervention programs to promote livestock and limit their potential contribution to poverty reduction. Recognition of the complexity of the role livestock plays in household decision-making and of the opportunities foregone due to these misconceptions can enhance the ability of livestock to contribute to human well-being in the developing world. Livestock sector development occurs as a part of overall economic development [5]. As incomes increase, demand for livestock products also increases. In wealthy countries, meat consumption per capita is at least four times higher than level of developing countries. Despite this disparity, developing countries have seen great increases in meat consumption over

the past 20 years. The increase of animal product consumption with increases in income is universal; although once a high level of wealth is attained animal product consumption levels off. Combined with urbanization and populations that are still increasing, as well as ongoing economic development, there is a tremendous capacity for continued increases in animal product consumption worldwide [5]. Livestock is important to the livelihood of the rural poor. Twenty five percent of the global poor (those living on $2 per day or less) are dependent on livestock for at least part of their livelihood [6]. This figure rises to an estimated 70% for the rural poor. The contribution of livestock to agricultural GDP has been estimated to be almost as much as cereals, that is, about 30% globally, and it is also the fastest growing agricultural sub-sector. If livestock sector growth is labor-intensive and based upon increases in production and efficiency for smallholder-farmers, the poverty reduction potential is significant; likewise, large-scale livestock development alone has less potential for reduction of rural poverty [7]. At the subsistence level, livestock can provide nutrition, clothing, wealth/status, and even basic livelihood support, while using surplus labor and household surpluses for feed. This type of livestock production is typically low input as well as low output. As agricultural and economic development occurs the nature of livestock production changes. More inputs are used, and livestock can be a significant source of cash revenue. The demand for meat (or protein/animal products) will increase as economic development occurs, pulling livestock sector development. As livestock sector development occurs, its impact on the poor is critical to development objectives. Relationship between livestock and the livelihood of rural people: Livestock is a source of cash income; Livestock is one of the few assets available to the poor, especially rural women; Livestock provides the draft power and manure


Role of Livestock Sector in the Socio-Economic Uplift of the Rural Pakistan

important for many crop systems; Livestock allows the poor to utilize common property; Livestock is a source of income diversification and stabilization; Livestock is often the only source of income for the poorest of the poor [8]. Delgado and his colleagues [5] have discussed how pro-poor livestock development could impact poverty. Livestock provides an opportunity for the very poor to maintain at least a subsistence income despite their low resource/capital base. Poor people often have little access to land or more productive land/pastures, but livestock can be produced with household surplus, through backyard-raising, and through using common property

providing special services to the commercial dairy farm and on the other hand the farmers are not aware of the fact that technical support in selection of dairy animals, and maintenance of proper health, reproduction and production will increase them per unit productivity and income. Under the present farming system, calf rearing is considered expensive and frequently avoided due to their higher prices of milk. Most of the farmers sell their calves within the first month to the butchers for saving the milk production and feedings. In the remaining calves, un-hygienic and un-scientific rearing arrangements are associated with higher calf mortality due to under or over feeding of milk or infestation with external or internal parasites. Only 16% of calves survive beyond 150 days postpartum. Most farmers from low socio-economics status are unconscious, have little knowledge of banks and other loaning agencies to successfully operate their enterprises. A bird eye view of the challenges faced by the livestock sector in rural areas of Pakistan has been presented as following: A significant portion of the countrys population suffers from malnutrition. Also it remains a big challenge to keep balance between demand and supply of food items from the animal source. Adequate efforts are needed to meet an ever-increasing public demand for milk, meat, eggs and dairy products. There is a lack of comprehensive health coverage to animals. Programs on the training for farmers are not available. There is a need to empower women through training and incentives. Prevailing of poor markets and lack of efforts to improve the marketing system in rural areas for poverty alleviation are being noticed. There is a lack of research based information available to conduct applied research to directly benefit the stakeholders.

3. Constraints Associated in the Promotion of Livestock Development

3.1 The Constraints Although the livestock sector in Pakistan has tremendous potential for growth, yet it experiences several problems and challenges. The major constraints hampering its development include: animal health (frequent disease out-break), inadequate diagnostic facilities, low genetic potential, poor nutritional and managemental status and weak marketing network. 3.2 Poor Livestock Services Services of the public sector organization are focused on protecting the subsistences livestock holding from diseases and economic potential of the sector remained ignored. A great scope exists for establishing a special services network based on productivity enhancement through better management of reproduction, feeding and health supplemented with marketing and financial support, which will enable the sector to produce a huge exportable surplus which can compete in international market [9]. Presently in Pakistan no arrangements exist in the public sector for

Role of Livestock Sector in the Socio-Economic Uplift of the Rural Pakistan


The potential role of media has not received importance. All efforts to raise awareness among the stakeholders through media must be made. Poor and week efforts for the conservation of indigenous breeds are made. There is a weak relationship between private sector and livestock development initiatives. Enhancement of private sector involvement in livestock development is highly desirable. Lack of resources for the grooming, cleaning and prevailing poor management conditions for the animals make them susceptible to diseases and look ugly etc. 3.3 Constraints Associated Insemination (AI) Services with an Artificial

In-sufficient research facilities.

4. Strategies to Overcome Problems

4.1 The Strategies Government programs should be planned for implementation in rural area. Micro-credit program support to livestock producers in shape of input supply; improvement of feed and fodder resource base and introducing live animal on meat weight basis backed by legislation to eliminate exploitation of the livestock producers by middle men and government must start work on the technical projects and be provided to the farmers. Better diseases control through vaccination campaign and improved disease surveillance systems. New production resources. Increased productivity through improved breed, feed processing, improved fodder storage, and better management of communal grazing resources. Improved storage and processing of livestock product. Access to markets and investment in infrastructure. Training and education of livestock farmers and breeders are quite absent. Suggestions to promote livestock production. Impose rules and regulations related to environmental impact of industrialized livestock production after the polluter pays principle. Support environmental protection measures and assist in solving problems with collection and utilization of effluents from industrial livestock production. Develop veterinary rules and regulations required for protection of public health. Support interventions to promote development of modern smallholder livestock production systems, which satisfy consumers requirements for quantity and quality. Establish enabling agricultural policies, infrastructure and vertical integration, which will promote private investment and interventions in the

Poor quality semen Poor services Anestrous, silent heat, late maturity&long calving interval Livestock is underfed and conventional methods to feed the livestock are hampering productivity. Number of animals is increased instead of emphasis on raising productivity. Lack of fattening practices hamper meat production. Sizeable loss in production is to effect of diseases, vaccination facilities are available to only 16% of the animal population. There is an acute shortage of funds for the supply of medicines and establishment of new hospitals and dispensaries. Budget constraints enable only 25% vaccination coverage (only in large animals for Hemorrhagic Septicemia) Shortage of vaccine; Shortage of vaccinators; Restricted mobility; Lack of training of the farmers; Lack of awareness among the farmers; In-adequate extension activities;


Role of Livestock Sector in the Socio-Economic Uplift of the Rural Pakistan

livestock sector. Promote and support research and advisory services with focus on particular problems and technologies related to small-holder production systems. Create credit facility and some user-friendly credit/loans for the farmers to add some new animals with good genetic make-up. Encourage the land-owners who are willing to set up a product processing services in the milk-producing rural areas.

5. Recommendations
Females claim major share in most of the decisions taken for livestock production. However, they contribute to decision-making to keep sheep and goats, poultry birds, area allocation to fodder crop and to go for improved fodder varieties. In most of the cases, the major part of the income generated by males is retained and handled by them. To upgrade female skills and knowledge in poultry production and the processing of milk, they need to be exposed to appropriate technological packages. The selling of milk remains a taboo. Therefore, the rural folk can not gain full benefits of the livestock rearing. Livestock is an important component of rural farming system. There is a need to conduct further research to document production and breed improvements. A rural woman in Pakistan works for 15 hours a day, spending 5-6 hours in caring for livestock. Women are responsible for 60% to 80% of the feeding and milking of cattle. Despite womens considerable involvement and contribution, their role in livestock production has been underestimated, undervalued and widely ignored. Appropriate savings and credit facilities that address the particular needs and constraints of the poor especially women are important tools for increasing production among poor livestock keepers. In order to develop a sustainable system for livestock management, it needs to be closely integrated with credit and marketing systems. The Community Empowerment through Livestock

Development and Credit Project aims at creating a cadre of female rural entrepreneurs who are economically empowered and serve their communities to effectively address livestock management issues. The project has been designed upon the request of the government of Pakistan, to pilot a program on women in livestock development. This initiative provides opportunities for self-employment and income generation among the rural women as well as helps them in maintaining the health of the livestock. A rural woman in Pakistan works almost 15 hours a day, spending about 5-6 hours in caring for livestock. Women involved in rearing livestock and poultry look after all its aspects and are responsible for about 60% to 80% of feeding and milking of dairy animals with the exception of herding and marketing, since these tasks require going away from home. Livestock provides jobs not only to men but also to 50% of women of their family in the agriculture sector. Extension agencies admit that women, as heads of household and managers of livestock, have great potential as agents of change in farming communities. They can boost animal production if properly trained and motivated. In order to increase the per animal production, it is imperative that rural women should be counselled to follow best practices for livestock health and production, particularly feeding, breeding, housing and disease control measures. Any effort for alleviation of poverty without active participation of women is destined to fail. Unless women are allowed to exploit their potential, the rural scene will remain unchanged. Though women are an integral part of the countrys economy, their share in economic benefits, opportunities and access to resources is not commensurate with their efforts. If women are provided with easy access to micro-credit and livestock-related trainings through available windows such as Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund (PPAF), Rural Support Programmes (RSP), First Women Bank (FWB), Agricultural

Role of Livestock Sector in the Socio-Economic Uplift of the Rural Pakistan


Development Bank (ADB) and Khushali Bank (KB), they can lead the country to progress. The areas of improved feeding, management, vaccination and processing of dairy products need to be addressed more effectively. Livestock and dairy development department should launch more development schemes focusing on the socio-economic development of women folk. The women trained in livestock production activities will help increase milk and meat production at national level and raise household incomes. In general, donor support to agricultural development in the future should focus less on investments and capacity building in the public sector and much more on capacity building in the private sector and the farming community to facilitate the process of change. There is a dire need to empower producer organisations to enable farmers to influence agricultural policies and to play a much needed active role in the dialogue with government for the development of appropriate policies and strategies. Furthermore, small holders cannot as individuals profit from the urban market; they have to organize to take-up their important role in the livestock industry, and to play the private market for livestock products. Examples of support would be development of formal education programmes for young commercial farmers; promotion of farmer managed advisory services; and development/strengthening of structures or institutions where the private agricultural sector and the government can meet as partners. Also, it seems essential to facilitate agro-industrial development primarily in rural areas through market studies, business plans, education for the agro industry and feasibility studies for the livestock industry.

attention and remained neglected, despite its importance as a tool for economic growth and poverty alleviation in rural areas. It is imperative that livestock production, processing and marketing be promoted as an integrated part of an agriculture sector support programme and managed on scientific lines. The recommendations made in the above paragraphs must be taken seriously and must be implemented with true spirits to realize the full potential. It is important to involve all the stake-holders in promoting livestock production endeavours through the participation of the policy-makers, planners, academia, researchers and the most importantly the herders/farmers. The country badly needs a white revolution to revive the rural economy as green revolution did in the sixties. All of us must recognize and play our due roles to achieve the common objective, i.e., self-sufficient Pakistan. Are we playing our role, perhaps not?

[1] [2] Pakistan Economic Survey (2009-2010), Ministry of Finance, Islamabad. Salahuddin, Capacity Building for Livestock Sector, EU/GoP Project Pak/RELEX/10129, SLSP, Islamabad, 2006. M.I. Qureshi, 4Agriculture Year Book 2004-2005, Government of Pakistan. Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock (Economic Wing), Islamabad, 2005. Agriculture Year Book (2009-2010), Government of Pakistan. Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock (Economic Wing), Islamabad. C. Delgado, M. Rosegrant, H. Steinfeld, S. Ehui, C. Courbois, Livestock to 2020: the next food revolution, Food, Agriculture and the Environment Discussion Paper 28, Washington DC: IFPRI, 1999. D. Perry, T.F. Randolph, J.J. McDermott, K.R. Sones, P.K. Thornton, Investing in animal health research to alleviate poverty, Nairobi: International Livestock Research Institute, 2002. S. Ashley, S. Holden, P. Bazeley, Livestock in poverty-focused development, Crewkerne: LID Livestock in Development, 1999. LID, Poverty reduction: A review of best practice in the livestock sector, Crewkeren: Livestock in Development, 1998. GOP, Pakistan Statistical Pocket Book, Government of Pakistan. Statistics Division, Federal Bureau of Statistic, Islamabad, 2005.






6. Conclusions

The above written paragraphs lead us to conclude that there is a great potential for enhancing the livestock production in the country. In the past, livestock production systems have not received due