Ethiopia

Ethiopia

CGIAR in Ethiopia


CGIAR has a 40 year history of supporting agriculture transformation in Ethiopia. A study in 2020 from the Standing Panel on Impact Assessment found that agricultural innovations linked to CGIAR research have potentially reached between 4.1 and 11 million Ethiopian households.


ILRI hosts 11 CGIAR centers in Ethiopia and all share many administrative and technical services. It is an excellent example of how CGIAR works together. The ILRI Campus also hosts affiliated partners, including AGRA, ICIPE, Venture 27, BMGF and CIFOR-ICRAF.

The livestock challenge in Ethiopia

Livestock play a crucial role in Ethiopia’s national development, accounting for a quarter of national GDP and 40% of agricultural GDP. They provide opportunities for livelihoods, jobs, inclusion and nutrition. At more than 50 million, Ethiopia’s cattle population is the largest in Africa and 8th largest globally.


However, livestock productivity in Ethiopia remains low. The average dairy farming household in Ethiopia is far less productive compared to other parts of the world. Demand for animal-sourced foods is rising faster than supply, particularly for meat and eggs, with food deficits projected to increase over time unless significant advances are made in the areas of animal feed, health, genetics and policies within the context of a sustainable systems approach.

Moreover, the sector is increasingly vulnerable to recurrent and widespread droughts and other climate-related natural disasters. Enabling smallholder farmers—who currently produce most of the milk, meat and eggs in integrated crop-livestock and pastoral systems—to produce competitively priced, safe, and nutritious livestock products offers opportunities for sustainable solutions to economic, environmental, social and health challenges facing the country.

 

How is ILRI addressing these challenges

Established in Ethiopia in 1974, ILRI has a rich history of projects that have delivered positive research and development outcomes in the livestock and agriculture sector. Today, ILRI’s research in Ethiopia is focused on:

  • Poultry, including identifying climate resilient, locally adapted, farmer preferred and economically viable chicken strains, and improving indigenous and commercial chicken strains through selective breeding.
  • Dairy genomic evaluation, including the national dairy cattle data platform, and innovative reproductive biotechnology tools and techniques.
  • Animal and human health, including the application of One Health approaches, vaccine and diagnostic development, food safety and control of emerging infectious and zoonotic diseases.
  • Sheep and goats, including community-based breeding programs and reproductive technologies, climate smart integrated ruminant innovations and data management platform.
  • Crop technologies and improvement, including crop management, post-harvest and utilization, seed system technologies and National Agriculture Research Systems (NARS) capacity building.


These areas are aligned with Ethiopia’s development priorities as well as CGIAR’s objective to create a food-secure future dedicated to transforming food, land and water systems in a climate crisis. They are being implemented in collaboration with key national actors and research-for-development partners in the country.


ILRI is ensuring that national partners enhance their capacity both individually and institutionally in terms of knowledge, systems and practices. Furthermore, ILRI is working with policymakers and contributing to the policy making process by providing research evidence and up-to-date knowledge and techniques.

Testimonials

Likawent Yeheyis

Likawent Yeheyis

Director, Livestock Research Amhara Regional Agricultural Research Institute

Over the last several years, ILRI has been one of the most trusted partners of the Amhara Regional Agricultural Research Institute. My institute has benefited immensely from ILRI’s Tropical Poultry Genetics Solutions program in terms of technical backstopping, direct financial support, and human and physical capacity building, for which we are most grateful.’

H.E. Dr. Fikiru Regassa

H.E. Dr. Fikiru Regassa

State Minister, Ethiopia Ministry of Agriculture

The Ethiopia Livestock Master Plan (LMP) that ILRI had supported the development of identified critical strategic areas that need attention. This masterplan is still very relevant today and the Poultry Development Strategy builds on this effort to pay special attention to the poultry sector.’

Ongoing work and facilities

Namukolo Covic

Namukolo Covic

Director General’s Representative to Ethiopia, CGIAR Ethiopia Country Convenor and CGIAR Regional Director for East and Southern Africa

Tadelle Dessie

Tadelle Dessie

Principal Scientist - Animal Genetics/Breeding

Wondmeneh Esatu

Wondmeneh Esatu

Scientist

Theo Knight-Jones

Theo Knight-Jones

Principal Scientist - Team Leader Herd Health

Olivier Hubert E Hanotte

Olivier Hubert E Hanotte

Principal Scientist

Kindu Mekonnen

Kindu Mekonnen

Crop-Livestock Systsems Scientist

Partners

Ministry of Agriculture

Ministry of Agriculture, Ethiopia

EIAR

Ethiopian Institute of Agricultural Research (EIAR)

Ethiopia Meteorology Institute

Ethiopia Meteorology Institute

Ministry of Health

Ministry of Health

Agricultural Transformation Agency

Agricultural Transformation Agency

Livestock Development Institute

Livestock Development Institute

Ministry of Irrigation and Lowlands

Ministry of Irrigation and Lowlands

ILRI also works with regional Agricultural Research Institutes, other federal ministries, universities, regional state government offices, local and international NGOs, donors, CGIAR centers, the private sector, local communities, and their representatives as well as development projects.

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