Adding value to livestock diversity

Marketing to promote local breeds and improve livelihoods

compete with high-yielding exotic breeds. Conserving these breeds is important: many have unique traits, such as hardiness and disease resistance, that are vital for future livestock production. One way to help ensure their survival may be to sell products from these breeds to high-value, specialist markets.

The Global Plan of Action for Animal Genetic Resources acknowledges the importance of market access to the sustainable use of livestock diversity and calls for development of markets for products derived from local species and breeds, and for strengthening processes that add value to their products.

This publication describes eight examples of marketing of livestock products (wool, cashmere, milk, meat and hides) from local breeds of Bactrian camels, dromedaries, goats and sheep in seven countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. It shows how they have kept local breeds in use, while enabling the small-scale livestock keepers and pastoralists who raise them to improve their livelihoods.

LPP, LIFE Network, IUCN–WISP and FAO. 2010. Adding value to livestock diversity – Marketing to promote local breeds and improve livelihoods. FAO Animal Production and Health Paper 168. Rome.


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Internationale Tagung Tierhalterrechte und Biologische Vielfalt

Schloss Lichtenberg im Odenwald, 19. Mai 2010

International conference on Livestock Keepers’ Rights and Biodiversity

Lichtenberg Castle, Odenwald, 19 May 2010

A report of a conference organized by the League for Pastoral Peoples and Endogenous Livestock Development. Summarizes presentations and discussions by livestock keepers and specialists from Germany, India, Pakistan, South Africa, Spain and Tanzania. In German.

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Local Livestock for Empowerment: The LIFE Network

Imagine if all cows were black and white… if all the pigs were pink… if every sheep, and every chicken, were white…

This booklet draws attention to the threat to local livestock breeds, and describes what the Local Livestock for Empowerment (LIFE) Network is doing to help pastoralists and small-scale livestock keepers to maintain them.

LIFE Network. 2010. Local Livestock for Empowerment Network, Ober-Ramstadt, Germany.

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Supporting livelihoods and local livestock breeds

Guidelines for putting Livestock Keepers’ Rights into practice

Livestock Keeper’s Rights are three principles and five rights that ensure that livestock keepers can continue raising their animals. This document gives practical guidelines on how development professionals, private companies, researchers, governments and policymakers can turn the rights into practice.

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Declaration on Livestock Keepers’ Rights

Lists three principles and five rights that make up Livestock Keepers’ Rights, and provides the legal instruments underpinning these rights in international law.

The Declaration is open for signatures until the end of August 2010.
The Declaration will be distributed at the tenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 10) of the Convention on Biological Diversity in Nagoya, Japan, from 18 to 29 October 2010.

To sign, please contact: LPP’s Evelyn Mathias, or Sabine Poth, Please indicate whether you would like to sign as an organization, an individual, or both.

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Download Liga Declaration 1,1 MB

Endogenous Development Magazine features biocultural protocols

Issue 6 of the Endogenous Development Magazine contains two articles on biocultural protocols relating to livestock.
A biocultural protocol is a document that records a community’s role in ecosystem management, and states its rights to benefit from the ecosystem. Several groups of livestock keepers have created biocultural protocols describing their animal breeds and their indigenous knowledge about their breeds.
The articles in the magazine are:

  • How Bio-cultural Community Protocols can empower local communities by Kabir Bavikatte and Harry Jonas of Natural Justice, a South African NGO specializing on social and environmental law
  • Bio-cultural Community Protocols, starting point for endogenous livestock development? by Ilse Köhler-Rollefson of the League for Pastoral Peoples and Endogenous Livestock Development.

Bio-cultural Community Protocols enforce Biodiversity Benefits: A selection of cases and experiences. Endogenous Development Magazine 6, July 2010. COMPAS, Leusden, Netherlands

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Biocultural Community Protocols for Livestock Keepers

League for Pastoral Peoples and Endogenous Livestock Development, and Local Livestock for Empowerment Network. 2010. Lokhit Pashu-Palak Sansthan (LPPS). Sadri, Rajasthan, India

Biocultural community protocols are a new approach with great potential for empowering pastoralists and other traditional livestock-keeping communities. They are both a process and a document in which communities invoke their rights as guardians of biological diversity under Article 8j of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity. Claiming rights for in-situ conservation, they also help promote Livestock Keepers’ Rights to maintain their breeds and continue their traditional management practices.

Biocultural community protocols put on record traditional knowledge and the biodiversity that communities steward, in a process that the communities themselves drive. In developing a biocultural community protocol, communities become informed about national and international laws that protect their rights. This book provides an overview of the process as well as its legal background and describes the first experiences with implementing this approach by livestock keepers in Asia and Africa.

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People-centred livestock development

A tool for sustainable development?

Ellen Geerlings

People-centred livestock development builds on livestock keepers’ own initiatives and efforts, while helping them to use the best of both local and outside knowledge and resources. This literature review summarizes and analyses the experiences of 16 projects and organizations in Africa, Latin America and Europe that use such approaches.

Geerlings, Ellen. 2010. People-centred livestock development: A tool for sustainable development? League for Pastoral Peoples and Endogenous Livestock Development. Ober-Ramstadt, Germany.

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Kuttapalayam Confirmation

A group of non-government organizations has called on governments and international organizations to support the conservation of livestock breeds in their original habitats – and by the livestock-keeping groups that developed them.

Members of the LIFE Network, a grouping of organizations focusing on local livestock breeds, made the call at a conference at Kuttapalayam, in Tamil Nadu, India, on 13-15 August 2010.

The final statement from the conference calls on the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations to promote agro-ecosystems approaches to the management of animal genetic resources and support indigenous and local production systems. These goals are already incorporated in the Global Plan of Action on Animal Genetic Resources.
The NGOs also demanded that livestock keepers be included in the debate about the future of livestock production and to be recognized as guardians of livestock biodiversity.

The conference statement was signed by 21 NGOs from India, South Africa, Kenya, Spain and Germany.

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Indigenous knowledge about animal breeding, traditional communities and the State of the World Report

League for Pastoral Peoples, Intermediate Technology Development Group East Africa, and Lokhit Pashu-Palak Sansthan, 2004

Leaflet calling that indigenous knowledge, pastoralists and other traditional livestock keeping communities be recognized in policies and databases on livestock.

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