ACGG aims to develop public-private partnerships that will deliver genetically improved chickens to smallholders, especially women. Past efforts to improve productivity and increase profit in smallholder chicken production in sub-Saharan Africa had little impact because they used exotic breeds developed for intensive feeding systems. Exotic birds are not suited to extensive systems and require high investments in feeds, veterinary support and energy. ACGG will deploy highly productive chicken breeds and work with all the actors along the chicken value chain. The project will test five improved breeds of chickens from Africa and India on-station (to determine their productivity) and on-farm (to determine their adaptability to the low-input systems of the smallholders).
“Improved genetics to be tested and distributed in Nigeria”, the PI said, “include the ShikaBrown® developed by National Animal Production Research Institute (NAPRI), Zaria, the FUNAAB Alpha available from Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB), the Kuroiler developed by Kegg Farms in India, the Fayoumi developed in the Fayoum Governorate in Egypt and the Fulani ecotype developed by the Bororo clan of the Fulani people. ACGG-Nigeria will work in 5 agro-ecological zones ranging from Kebbi to Rivers, Taraba to Lagos and Nasarawa to Delta States”.
Expected ACGG outcomes are, among others:
i) Determination of the chicken breeds preferred by poor farmers, especially women, based on scientifically gathered production and socio-cultural data;
ii) Smallholders’ access to those preferred breeds that have productivity that is at least 200% more than the unimproved local breeds;
iii) Increased empowerment of women smallholder farmers in the chicken value chain;
iv) A national Innovation Platform, as a network of stakeholders, to ensure sustainable access of smallholder farmers to at least two of the genetically improved breeds.
ACGG-Nigeria is led by Prof. E.B. Sonaiya of the Department of Animal Sciences, OAU, as the Principal Investigator (PI), Prof. Mrs. O.A. Adebambo (FUNAAB) and Prof. I.A. Adeyinka (NAPRI, Ahmadu Bello University) as co-PIs. There is a full-time National Project Coordinator, Dr. O. Bamidele, and 5 Zonal Coordinators: Prof. W.A. Hassan (Usmanu Danfodiyo University, Sokoto – North-West), Mr. A. Yakubu (Nasarawa State University, Keffi – North-East), Prof. Mrs. U. Ogundu (Federal University of Technology, Owerri – South-East), Dr. Mrs. F. Ajayi (University of Port Harcourt, Port Harcourt – South-South) and Dr. Mrs. O. Alabi (Landmark University, Omu-Aran – South-West).