As the pandemic adversely affected the country's livestock sector, an initiative has been taken to link online food delivery platforms with local dairy processors that will reach more customers and minimize the negative economic impacts on their businesses
The income of about 70% households, whose income depends on livestock, decreased since the beginning of the Covid-19 outbreak, revealed an analysis carried out by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID.)
The development agency is currently working to minimize the negative economic impacts on the livestock sector by promoting alternative marketing strategies.
A virtual roundtable in this regard was held on Wednesday by the USAID's Feed the Future (FtF) Bangladesh Livestock Production for Improved Nutrition Activity (LPIN) project.
John Smith-Sreen, director of USAID in Bangladesh, and Muhammad Nurul Amin Siddiquee, chief of party at FtF Bangladesh Livestock Production's LPIN project, discussed how this activity is contributing to reducing the impact of Covid-19 pandemic in Bangladesh.
As the pandemic adversely affected the country's livestock sector, an initiative has been taken to link online food delivery platforms with local dairy processors that will reach more customers and minimize the negative economic impacts on their businesses, the speakers said.
John Smith-Sreen said: “While the Covid-19 pandemic has significantly affected Bangladesh’s agricultural sector, including the livestock sector, I am hopeful that the resilience of farmers, businesses and other actors will help the sector to bounce back.”
He praised the women’s contribution in the livestock sector and emphasized to focus more on women’s empowerment and bring them to mainstream markets.
USAID officials also presented their findings of an analysis on the Covid-19 situation.
It was stated there that during the pandemic 31% average milk production decreased (from 4.04 litres per day from cattle to 2.78%), 70% households’ income decreased since the beginning of COVID-19 and 90% households worried about hunger and lack of food.
Compared to 10% in pre-Covid times, 70% reported that their meal quality decreased, while enterprises experienced a 42% decrease in sales compared to their pre-Covid days.
In this case, USAID urged for safety equipment, access to finance, and government support in response to the pandemic's economic fallouts.
With funding from USAID, the Feed the Future Bangladesh Livestock Production for Improved Nutrition Activity has been working to increase livestock productivity for improved nutrition and income generation of rural households since 2015.
Muhammad Nurul Amin Siddiquee, chief of party at FtF Bangladesh Livestock Production's LPIN project, said: “One of the goals of the activity during the pandemic was to ensure market access for livestock farmers and enterprises so that they can minimize their economic losses and sustain the nutritional gains achieved so far.”