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Livestock and Livelihoods: Development Goals and Indicators applied to Senegal

Published by:
Publication date
Type of Publication:
Working Papers & Briefs
Focus Region:
Sub-Saharan Africa
Focus Topic:
Agricultural Value Chains / Agri-Businesses
Roland-Holst, D.; Otte, J.

In this report, we present a series of empirical techniques to examine linkage between livestock and livelihood, using data from Senegal, a West African economy with high levels of smallholder poverty and livestock dependence. Our results for this country show that livestock dependent populations are more likely to be poor and the severity of their poverty is greater, yet the same reliance on livestock also offers a way to mitigate their adversity. By analysing market linkages and supply chains in the livestock sector, we find that rural household producers capture only a small fraction of the ultimate value of their products. Moreover, we find that generalist agricultural promotion policies may be of limited value to them because most of the value created by these policies can be captured by downstream market participants. Our primary conclusion is that livestock holds substantial potential for poverty alleviation, but that carefully targeted policies are required to realise this potential.