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Increasing egg availability through smallholder business models in East Africa and India

Availability and consumption of eggs, especially in Sub‐Saharan Africa and Asia, is low despite their apparent benefits. We investigated constraints in egg production in four countries; Kenya, Ethiopia, Malawi, and India and identified five business models that are viable and sustainable. They are (a) micro‐franchising, (b) microfinancing, (c) co‐operative farming, (d) enterprise development, and (e) out‐grower model. All of them involve smallholder farmers to increase egg production. These farmers have access to soft loans and use improved inputs and extension services to varying degrees. Inputs include resilient breeds of day‐old chicks or point‐of‐lay hens, feed, vaccines, medicines, and housing. Outgrower and enterprise development models have a significant potential of rapidly increasing egg yields, achieve self‐sufficiency, operate at or near scale, and provide a high income for the farmers. This study shows how a range of actors in commercial, not‐for‐profit and microfinance sectors with specialized skills, can facilitate the transformation of the egg production sector. Specific skills include brooding (hatchery operations), feed milling, aggregation, and training of smallholder farmers or large‐scale rearing. The five archetypes we describe here are promising ways to increase egg availability in rural areas.

Beesabathuni, Kalpana & Lingala, Srujith & Kraemer, Klaus. (2018). Increasing egg availability through smallholder business models in East Africa and India. Maternal & Child Nutrition. 14. 10.1111/mcn.12667.

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