Growth and Transformation of Chicken & Eggs Value Chains in Nigeria

Saweda Liverpool-Tasie, Bolarin Omonona, Awa Sanou, Wale Ogunleye, Samantha Padilla, and Thomas Reardon. 2016. Growth and Transformation of Chicken & Eggs Value Chains in Nigeria. Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Food Security Policy Research Paper 22. East Lansing: Michigan State University

Using data from multiple sources we explore the dynamic growth and transformation that is taking place in the Nigerian poultry subsector. We find that increased consumption of poultry products in Nigeria is occurring alongside rapid urbanization and growth in the poultry industry. In just one decade, the volume of feed used in Nigeria skyrocketed from 300 thousand to 1.8 million tons – a 600% climb. Contrary to the idea that Nigeria is inundated with illegal imports of poultry products, we find that domestic production covers about 85% of domestic consumption, and (illegal) imports appear to be only about 15% of consumption. This indicates that efforts towards addressing illegal smuggling of poultry products into Nigeria should be supplemented with at least equal effort to ensuring the sustainable growth of domestic poultry production in the country. In contrast to numerous assertions that poultry production in Nigeria is predominantly in the south, we see that the North has about 60% of the share of small farmers’ chicken holdings versus 40% in the south. We did find, however, that the emerging medium-large scale chicken farms, producing about 10-20% of Nigeria’s chicken and eggs, are in deed mainly in the South. The importance of chicken and egg production by small farmers in the North however calls for at least as much attention to the North as is given to the South in discussions on and programs designed for the subsector.

Chicken production in the North appears to be very important to small holders. Farmers in the hinterland (far from major markets which tend to be in towns/cities) in the north tend to have twice as many birds as those far away from markets in the South. With such high poverty rates in the North, support for smallholder chicken farmers in the North could address poverty and food security concerns. This will also be important for small farmers in the South. Both consumption and production of chicken in southern Nigeria are relatively spatially concentrated toward the big demand magnets of the urban and peri-urban areas. This implies that increases in egg demand as incomes rise and urbanization proceeds is best availed where there is significant investment in rural infrastructure connecting to the dynamic urban demand motors, especially rural feeder roads direct to towns and connecting to inter-urban corridor highways.

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