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Livestock Systems

Assessing goat production and marketing systems in Lao PDR and market linkages into Vietnam

Project Code: LPS/2016/027
Budget:
A$240,000
Research Program Manager: Dr. Anna Okello
Project Leader: Stephen Walkden-Brown - University of New England
Duration:
OCT 2016
OCT 2018
Project Status: Concluded
Key partners
National Agriculture and Forestry Research Institute
DOCUMENTS

Overview

This project describes a strategy for an extended partnership between Laos, Vietnam and Australia for research on goat production and marketing.

Scoping of previous research and development achievements and assessment of current research on goat systems was undertaken through a search and review of published and ‘grey’ literature and by the convening of a workshop to review current and past ACIAR investments in goats in Asia. A significant output of that workshop was a plan for a production and marketing survey in Laos and Vietnam and agreement among four ongoing ACIAR projects in Laos, Myanmar, the Pacific and Pakistan to share information and use similar protocols for data collection and analysis.

Initial field surveys on goat production and marketing were undertaken in southern and northern Laos by an experienced team led by NAFRI. All farmers shared the same constraints of high mortality of young and mature goats with the figures ranging from 10% to 80%, as reported during interviews. Disease signs such as diarrhoea (potentially parasitic) bloat and mouth lesions (presumably Orf) were common. Better definition of the extent and causes of mortality and their control was identified as an important research questions.

Outcomes

The survey confirmed the high demand for goats in the cities of Laos and from many centres in Vietnam. They also confirmed the lack of inputs to the mainly smallholder farmers who supply the market. During the survey and on subsequent field visits a small number of more commercially oriented farmers were identified. All farmers shared the same constraints of high mortality of young and mature goats with the figures ranging from 10% to 80%, as reported during interviews. Disease signs such as diarrhoea (potentially parasitic) bloat and mouth lesions (presumably Orf) were common. Better definition of the extent and causes of mortality and their control was identified as an important research questions.

Through interviews with farmers, traders, abattoir owners and restaurateurs along these market chains in Laos, and along the southern market chain to Quang Tri and nearby provinces details of the high demand were captured. On average there is a 30% price premium for goats originating in Laos compared with local mostly crossbred Vietnamese goats with a likely, but yet to be confirmed, consumer preference for Lao provenance that has a better taste and an image of being clean and green.

A research proposal has emerged which has the strong backing of senior stakeholders in Laos and Vietnam. Collaborators have been identified and have agreed to undertake the detailed design, implement the project and be responsible for the research outputs having the maximum chance to influence farmers, traders, prcessors and retailers along the market chains in Laos and between Laos and Vietnam.