I am thankful to the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations at Islamabad, Pakistan for giving me this opportunity to serve the people of the war-hit region of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Of course, this was an exciting task for me, as I have interacted with various stakeholders across the livestock-based value chain during my 36-years regular career as a civil officer with the provincial government and as a professor/dean at the University of Agriculture Peshawar. I got a productive interaction with the private sector, policy makers and international players through academia-industries-government linkages.
The dairy, mutton, poultry and fish farmers are usually landless people, living a life with little access to quality foods and education. Their income is usually very little in spite of having a huge resource-base and the food they are producing for the consumers in the form of milk, meat and eggs, is neither assured for quality parameters, nor monitored under some traceability system. They are subjected to penalty by the district administration when they sale meat and milk of pure quality at somewhat higher prices. Hence the livestock and poultry farmers are facing unbearable financial burden and most of these valuable assets are on way to total collapse. Ten public and private sector organizations are mandated for serving the Livestock Sector covering extension, research, fisheries, education, livestock markets, slaughter houses price regulation, food safety, trade and farmers welfare. However, lack of coordination and their apathy towards the farmers and processors, has left the burning issues unattended.
This Mission has tried his best to prepare KP Livestock Action Plan 2019 as a relief for the weaker stakeholders across the livestock value chain, in the public and private sectors, within a governance framework of Academia-Industry-Government-Society Nexus. An autonomous Livestock Technopark Peshawar (LTP) has been suggested to be established, initially as a Task Force through an executive order and later on through an Act of the Legislative Assembly/Ordinance of Governor; with full regulatory, administrative, financial and legislative powers to protect all the stakeholders of the livestock industry, and engage all relevant private and public sector organizations with shared authority and responsibility.
At the end of the year 2021 LTP would be able to generate direct decent employment models to the tune of 18,000, each one earning about Rs. 50,000 per month and employing five more persons each. Hygienic, Halal and Organic food would be produced per annum valuing Rs. 5,098 billion. A fraction of 10% may be injected into Halal Meat and Biotech Export Market. Motivated young graduates in veterinary, engineering, medical, business and social sciences would be joining LTP for their career development and transformation of ideas into actions to serve the society. Quality conscious consumers would be having access to traceable food products in the towns. Public and private sector organizations would have access to sufficient operational funds for motivating their staff and serving people. And this is the Beacon of Hope committed by the author through title of this FAO-KP Livestock Action Plan 2019.
(Prof Dr Muhammad Subhan Qureshi)
National Consultant FAO Peshawar
August 31, 2019