Kick-off broiler training and opening PTC in Mandalay

Kick-off broiler training and opening PTC in Mandalay

Monday 6th of February was a special day for the SAPA project. The first broiler training took place for 10 selected veterinarians. At the same time the first Poultry Training Center in Mandalay opened as part of the training. 

One of the main components of the SAPA Project is the capacity building of farmers, both broiler farmers as corn farmers. Last Monday 6th of February two milestones of the SAPA project took place: firstly, the kick-off of the first broiler training for 10 selected veterinarians in Mandalay and secondly, this training took place at the first Poultry Training Centre (PTC) of Myanmar.

The PTC is built on the farm of broiler farmer U Win Hlaing, who was selected and eager to participate in SAPA to upgrade his existing farm into a PTC. This PTC will be used throughout the whole SAPA project to train veterinarians, broiler farmers and workers until 2020 on various topics related to broiler farming. The reason why this PTC is so special is because this is the first training centre on a broiler farm, where trainees receive theory and are immediately able to observe, reflect and apply the acquired knowledge into practice. In the coming months two more PTCs are opened: in NPT and Yangon.

The first broiler farmer training is a 10 day training for 10 selected veterinarians, who have the responsibility to train 750 broiler farmers and workers throughout the whole of Myanmar. The topics of this first training were: farm management and bio-security. In the coming year two additional training modules take place so that at the end of the training courses the veterinarians are certified SAPA-trainers. The topics addressed are: health, nutrition, housing, entrepreneurship and the broiler production standard.

As the opening of the PTC and the kick-off of the first broiler training are a very important milestone in the SAPA project, a special opening ceremony was organised with members of the Mandalay Livestock Federation and the deputy general of the LBVD (Livestock, Breeding and Veterinary Department) and the director of De Heus Myanmar and a ribbon cutting ceremony.

Selection of private broiler farms as practical ‘poultry’ training centres

Selection of private broiler farms as practical ‘poultry’ training centres

An important step towards training 750 farmers and workers. One important aspect of the SAPA project is to build the capacity of broiler farmers. The capacity lies both in upgrading knowledge and skills on for example farm management, nutrition, housing, bio-security and health. 

What is important within the SAPA-approach is that the training should be very practical and realistic according to the Myanmar context and applicable to any level of a farmer. Training modules are a combination of theory and practical orientation, observation and analysis on the farm. For the practical aspect three private broiler farms in respectively Yangon, NPT and Mandalay needed to be selected for upgrading towards practical poultry training centres.

Firstly, in these practical poultry training centres 10 veterinaries are trained on three modules: management and bio-security, housing and health, entrepreneurship and nutrition. Secondly, the 10 vets will train 250 farmers and 500 workers. And this will all happen until the end of 2020.

In 2016 (August and December), two visits took place in Myanmar from Dutch poultry experts. Their mission was to select three suitable farms (and therefore farmers) to be upgraded to a poultry training centre in the area of Yangon, NPT and Mandalay. Suitable refers to for example the following criteria: the farmer should be the owner, farm should have 5000 broilers or more, the farm should have an appropriate recording system, the location of the farm and the housing of the farm should be one step beyond the basic open house system. In the last mission of December, finally two farms were selected in Mandalay and NPT. Meaning, that the upgrading can start as soon as possible in 2017 and that the first training of the vets will take place in February 2017.


Broiler house


Inside a broiler house


Closed house with climate control

Bel Ga to establish international standard hatchery in Myanmar

Bel Ga to establish international standard hatchery in Myanmar

A state-of-the-art hatchery will soon start construction in Yangon, an important milestone for the SAPA project (Sustainable and Affordable Poultry for All) and for the poultry sector in Myanmar.

One of the important targets for SAPA project is to reduce the current unstable supply of Day Old Chicks (DOCs) and provide the farmers with the possibility to independently choose their feed and DOCs supplier. For this reason, a professional hatchery will be established by Bel Ga Myanmar in Myaung Dakar Industrial Zone, Hmawbi, Yangon.

Bel Ga Myanmar is 100% owned by BDH Azie B.V, a joint venture between Belgabroed and De Heus Animal Nutrition, two partners of the SAPA project. With the knowledge and experience of both companies, Bel Ga Myanmar (with an annual capacity of 12 million DOCs) has the ambition to support the independent local farmers with High Quality DOCs.

The landfill works for the project have been completed and construction is expected to start in December 2016. The hatchery will launch its first DOCs to the Myanmar poultry market by June 2017.

Furthermore, Bel Ga Myanmar is also in the process of identifying land for a poultry breeding farm capable of accommodating 96,000 hens to ensure that farmers will get a stable supply of high quality DOCs and to help address the rapidly growing demand for poultry products in the country.

The presence of Bel Ga Myanmar will contribute to the development of not only the independent poultry farmers but also of the agricultural industry in Myanmar.

Minister Koenders opens Dutch embassy in Myanmar

Minister Koenders opens Dutch embassy in Myanmar

On Wednesday (12 October) Minister Koenders (Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands) opened the Dutch embassy in Myanmar (formerly known as Burma). An unique moment because everywhere else in the world the Dutch embassies are closing down or at least decreasing the number of staff. But in Myanmar a new Dutch embassy is being established.

Furthermore, this was the first Dutch political mission to the new Myanmar government. The last political elections in November 2015 were the first elections in 60 years in which the leading party (NLD: National League of Democracy) was democratically chosen by a majority of votes. After 60 years of military rule, and hardly any focus on the development of the country and the people, the current government has a very challenging task but certainly shows the mentality to succeed.

Only two months ago the first Dutch ambassador arrived in Yangon. This changed the economic mission of the Netherlands in Myanmar into a more ambitious mission which results in having a Dutch embassy present in Myanmar. Surely this indicates the potential of Myanmar in general, and specifically in trade and the water and agro-food sector.

During his 3-day visit to Myanmar Minister Koenders had meetings with the private sector in order to stimulate and strengthen the economic relationships between the Netherlands and Myanmar. This is also something he stressed several times during his speech at the opening of the embassy.

For SAPA, these are encouraging and beneficial developments: the establishment of the Dutch embassy in Myanmar; the continuous strengthening of the economic relationships between the Netherlands and Myanmar; and finally the focus on developing and improving the agriculture of the new government.

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De Heus proudly opens feed factory in Yangon, Myanmar

De Heus proudly opens feed factory in Yangon, Myanmar

An important step for the livestock industry for Myanmar and the Netherlands.

Saturday the 1st of October was a memorable day in the lengthy history of the family-owned business of De Heus. At this day, De Heus Animal nutrition celebrated the opening of its first factory in Myanmar. This ultra-modern factory has been built over the past six months. With this new facility De Heus gives further substance to its ambitions to strengthen its position in Asia.

For several years, De Heus is exporting nutritional products from Vietnam to Myanmar. In this period, De Heus gained a lot of experience and knowledge about the local agricultural market. Based on the conviction that De Heus can make a valuable contribution to the further professionalisation of livestock farming in Myanmar, it was decided to start the production of feed in the local market. The new plant has a capacity of 120,000 tons, but at a later stage this capacity can be increased up to 240,000 tons. With its location in the immediate proximity of Yangon, the factory is strategically located in relation to the major local agricultural arias. De Heus Myanmar will focus mainly on the poultry sector (biggest sector in size), but also in the pig and cattle sectors De Heus sees ample growth opportunities.

As lead partner in the SAPA (Sustainable and Affordable Poultry for All) consortium this is also an important step in order to improve the quality of corn produced in Myanmar and at the same time upgrade the capacity of both broiler as corn farmers in order to further professionalise the livestock farming in Myanmar.

During the opening, various important actors of the agricultural and livestock sector were present, both national as international. The Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation (Dr. Aung Thu) was present and expressed his admiration and the necessity for investment in livestock and agriculture to improve the Myanmar food security which is necessary to sustain healthy growth. Besides the Minister, also the Ambassador of the Royal Kingdom of the Netherlands in Yangon was present and he expressed his admiration to the fast growth of Myanmar and the openness of the current government to encourage this growth. Finally, he expressed his proudness to De Heus that this Dutch company will contribute to improving the livestock industry and therefore the food security in Myanmar.

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Baseline study corn SAPA in Myanmar

Baseline study corn SAPA in Myanmar

In preparation of the implementation of the various result areas within the SAPA project a baseline study regarding both corn and broiler farmers needed to be conducted.

In the beginning of 2016 two baseline studies regarding corn took place in Myanmar. The field location of these studies were placed in Shan State (Taunggyi township) and Ayeryawady (Hinthada township). The teams occupied with this interesting task were composed out of different backgrounds: agronomists, agricultural economists, corn experts, students, Asians and Europeans. The well-known and popular Rapid Diagnostic Appraisal (RDA) method was used for this baseline-study. A RDA empowers people to analyse their own situations and challenges, show their own solutions and how they would implement these solutions. RDA is a process and method that can be used to learn about the context, conditions and perceptions of various actors in a product chain.

In total 247 respondents were interviewed of which 217 corn farmers (38 female) and 30 other corn chain actors, such as extension officers, government officials, corn traders and input suppliers.

The results are translated in a baseline study report which forms the basis for the implementation of the SAPA project.

 

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Baseline study broiler farmers SAPA in Myanmar

Baseline study broiler farmers SAPA in Myanmar

In preparation of the implementation of the various result areas within the SAPA project a baseline study regarding both corn and broiler farmers needed to be conducted.

In the beginning of 2016 two baseline studies regarding broiler farmers took place in Myanmar. The field location of these studies were based in Yangon and Bago division and Nay Pyi Taw and Mandalay division. The teams occupied with this interesting task were composed out of different backgrounds: agricultural economists, nutritionists, poultry experts, students, Asians and Europeans. The well-known and popular Rapid Diagnostic Appraisal (RDA) method was used for this baseline-study. A RDA empowers people to analyse their own situations and challenges, show their own solutions and how they would implement these solutions. The core principles of RDA are role reversal, triangulation and optimal ignorance and appropriate imprecision.

In total 173 respondents were interviewed of which 99 broiler farmers (9 female) and 74 other broiler chain actors, such as veterinarians, DOC (Day Old Chick) suppliers, hatchery managers, feed suppliers, workers, wholesalers and retailers.

The results are translated in a baseline study report which forms the basis for the implementation of the SAPA project.

 

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Kick-off meeting SAPA project in Myanmar

Kick-off meeting SAPA project in Myanmar

In the beginning of October 2015 a kick-off workshop of the SAPA (Sustainable and Affordable Poultry for All) project was organized in Yangon (Myanmar) in which all partners came together to catch the momentum to look forward. 

Within SAPA, 7 project partners are involved: Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, De Heus, Belgabroed, Fresh Studio, Aeres Group, Myanmar Livestock Federation and Yezin Agriculture University. An interesting combination of international and national partners in terms of private, public and knowledge institutions. Partners who all consist out of different and needed qualities in order to develop SAPA into a success story. One of the main aspects of this workshop is to get to know each other in a participatory and interactive way to set a strong basis for future collaboration.

Besides celebrating the fact that SAPA became reality, partners were brought together to develop a clear understanding of the project activities, objectives, roles and responsibilities of one another. Another aspect was to look ahead for the 5 years of the project and start thinking of the planning of the project implementation in general and specifically towards the separate partner activities.

 

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