From the 1st to 3rd October 2019, Rwanda is hosting Poultry Africa 2019, a major international exhibition and conference event for Sub-Saharan Africa. The event is coming back to Rwanda following a successful hosting of the first Poultry Africa in October 2017 where it won great appreciation and set a solid basis for a return to Kigali this year.
Poultry Africa 2019 is taking place at Kigali Convention Centre and is organised by VNU Exhibitions Europe with the key support of Rwanda's Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRI) in collaboration with the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Rwanda. The three-day event consists of three parts: a highly professional Leadership Conference, the Expo, as well as Technical Best Practices Seminars in the poultry industry.
It has brought together over 2000 participants and exhibitors from over 50 countries worldwide; including poultry professionals, poultry business operators, poultry farmers, inputs manufacturers and suppliers, distributors, processors, packaging and equipment manufacturer as well as animal scientists. The conference is discussing current issues in the poultry industry while the exhibition features 128 companies from Europe, USA, Asia, and Africa including those from Rwanda.
Speaking at the opening of this event today, Minister of Agriculture and Animal Resources, Dr. Gerardine Mukeshimana, described it as a rare opportunity for key players in the poultry industry to network and explore ways and means of improving their different poultry operations as Poultry 2019 has all the key poultry value chain players in Kigali.
"I urge the Rwanda poultry business owners to take advantage of the presence of the captains of this industry here to establish contacts and linkages to do business together so as to improve their respective poultry operations. To those that wish to start engaging in various poultry value chain business, this is your time," she said.
The Government of Rwanda recently elaborated a Livestock Master plan that identified poultry as one of the avenues that can be efficiently used to improve national food security through the provision of high-quality protein as well as income generation for small scale farmers. The master plan envisages an increase of 124% in chicken meat and 110% in egg production in 5 years.
Rwanda's poultry population has been growing at an average annual rate of 9% over the past seven years from 3.5 million in 2010 to 7.6 million in 2018 with 69% of the population being local breeds while 31 % are raised in commercial poultry farms with exotic breeds. The domestic production of eggs in Rwanda has increased at an average rate of 8 % rising from 80 million eggs in 2010 to 132.7 million eggs in 2018 due to increased use of exotic layer breeds.
The country currently has 15 large commercial poultry farmers raising between 20,000 and 100,000 layers, 108 medium with 5,000 - 20,000 layers and 222 small commercial poultry farmers raising between 1,000 and 5, 000 layers. There are 10 large commercial, 25 medium, and 50 small broiler farmers and poultry meat increased from 13,718 tons in 2010 to 45,000 in 2018. There are 3 private poultry slaughter facilities, 7 animal feed factories in various parts of the country as well as 3 companies producing day - old chicks that have previously been imported.