2017 Health and Social Protection Review

Animal Health in Development – Its Role for Poverty Reduction and Human Welfare

Jonathan Rushton, Arvid Uggla, Ulf Magnusson

Agricultural development is the basis for economic growth in lowincome countries, with animal production constituting a major component of their agricultural economies. Around 750 million livestock keepers in the world are living on less than 2 US dollars a day, suggesting a substantial opportunity to lift people out of poverty by increasing livestock productivity and resilience.

This study presents the significance of reliable animal health control systems in relation to a sustainable and resilient livestock sector including animal welfare, in low-income countries, with particular attention to Sub-Saharan Africa. It provides a basis for recommendations on priorities and strategies regarding a science-based animal health management.

The report was presented during the seminar Animal health matters.

Three areas are recommended for Swedish assistance and increased investment in animal health systems:

  • To develop tools for analysing how efficient health interventions are. Sweden has an outstanding position in surveillance, prevention and control of livestock diseases and antimicrobial resistance in animals.
  • To promote more sustainable animal health systems. Sweden could be seen as a role model, since it combines a uniquely low use of antimicrobials in the livestock sector with high productivity and good animal Welfare.
  • Building human capacity. Sweden has over the years developed an advanced educational and training capacity in animal health and production.

Jonathan Rushton, Phd, University of Liverpool
Arvid Uggla, Emeritus professor, Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet (SLU)
Ulf Magnusson, Professor, Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet (SLU)