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Patterns of change in beef production and consumption in Africa

Author(s) : N.E. Tambi & O.W. Maina

Summary :

This paper analyses the patterns of change in the production and consumption of beef in Africa over the last two decades. A ‘decomposition’ method of analysis is used to examine the change in total beef production during this period, attributable to changes in herd size, in the proportion of cattle slaughtered and in productivity per head of cattle. Sub-regional aggregations are complemented with similar analyses for individual countries to demonstrate the diverse patterns of change in beef production and consumption. The results reveal an overall increase in total beef production (due mainly to an increase in cattle numbers and in the percentage of slaughtered cattle, rather than to productivity gains), a stagnation in per capita production, and an overall increase in the total consumption of beef and a decline in per capita consumption (due mainly to faster population growth and urbanisation, and a decline in per capita income, respectively).

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