The Egg Capacity Building seminar hosted by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the International Egg Commission (IEC), in Lusaka, Zambia, came to a close September 19. The seminar has been deemed a great success, with 30 delegates attending from nine countries in Southern Africa.
Makhotoso Mahali Malibeng from the Department of Livestock Services of the Kingdom of Lesotho commented that the seminar addressed successfully the issues encountered in Lesotho and that she will use the information received to ensure that the local egg producers' association is more effective to address the needs of both large and small producers.
Ishmael Mosinyi, Chairman of the Botswana Poultry Association, commented: "The two day seminar has been incredibly useful. We have had the opportunity to discuss in detail the issues affecting egg production and consumption in our own countries, but we have also learnt a great deal about how other countries around the world are tackling similar issues. Working together in this way, sharing information and best practice examples, will undoubtedly help us to increase people's knowledge and understanding about the important role eggs play in human nutrition. I am confident that as a result of the discussions that have taken place, and the connections we have made with people from other countries, we are now better prepared to implement a plan of action to boost egg production in our countries, and to make more eggs available for people."
Government representatives, veterinarians and egg producers from Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Zambia and Zimbabwe gathered in Lusaka, for the seminar organized by the FAO and IEC.
Dr. Vincent Guyonnet from the IEC commented: "This was the first seminar of its kind organized by the IEC and FAO. I am incredibly pleased with how well it has been received. Eggs are an excellent source of accessible, high-quality protein, with an important role to play in providing a sustainable food supply for Southern Africa's growing population." Dr. Olaf Thieme from the FAO added: "If, by holding seminars like these, we are able to help all producers, large and small stockholders, increase their egg supply and provide more highly nutritious food, this will be a great success. We were also able to raise the awareness of the links between animal health and human heath, which is highlighted by the 'One Health' concept".
Following on from the seminar, IEC members and FAO staff will continue to provide support to delegates and build on the relationships that have been established.
The response to the seminar has been extremely positive. The FAO and IEC are now hoping to build on this support to roll out a program of similar seminars in other regions of the world.