Project final report

Evaluating the opportunities for smallholder livestock keepers in Timor-Leste - Final report

Date released
23 December 2021
Publication Code

Dominic Smith, Tarni Cooper (eds), Joanita Jong, Abrao Pereira


This project aimed to further develop a vision and direction for ACIAR to support sustainable development of the smallholder livestock sector in Timor-Leste over the next 5-10 years.

Livestock are kept by the majority (87.2%) of households in Timor-Leste.  Pigs are kept by a total of around 146,000 households with a national herd estimated at almost 420,000. There is a good case for analyzing interventions around smallholder pig production that could have potentially positive impacts on livelihoods. These include support to improve sow/piglet nutrition and management utilising locally available feedstuffs. There is a relatively strong demand for piglets for households to raise for their own ceremonial purposes or for sale to other households for ceremonial purposes. The scale and sustainability of this demand for piglets will be what determines the business case for any project supporting improved sow and piglet nutrition and management for smallholders.

Project outcomes

  • Evaluated the business case for ACIAR support to smallholder pig production, taking into account markets and broader social, economic and cultural factors.
  • Evaluated key constraints and influencing factors relating to formalizing cross-border trade in livestock between Timor-Leste and Nussa Tengara Timur (NTT -Indonesia)
  • Conducted a comparative analysis of key smallholder livestock sectors in TL in the context of a visioning process around the best use of ACIAR resources.

View the project page