How can genetics increase the efficiency of livestock productivity in the Gulf countries?

Dubai, United Arab Emirates (CNN) – The world is watching the emerging agricultural technology sector, and advances in animal husbandry, genetics and genomics, to help overcome two of its biggest challenges: sustainably feeding a growing world population, and combating climate changing the climate.

The world’s population is expected to increase to almost 10 billion by 2050, according to the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs’ population department.

The global challenge of food security could, according to experts, be a major obstacle in the Gulf region, which experts say imports about 85% of food from abroad in light of the disruption of some supply chains during the Corona virus pandemic, which means the need for new and adopt sustainable technologies to produce new food systems.

Reduced productivity growth in light of increased livestock

World demand for animal products is expected to increase by up to 50% by 2050. , plain_textCredit: Cogent Breeding Ltd.

By 2050, global demand for animal products is expected to increase by up to 50%, according to the chief livestock development officer at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) sub-regional office of the Gulf Cooperation Council for Arab States. and Yemen, Marcus Tebow, in an interview with CNN in Arabic.

Human population growth, income growth, urbanization and changing diets are driving projected production requirements to meet demand.

During 1993 and 2013, while global livestock grew by only 16%, livestock numbers in the Middle East and North Africa increased by 25%, from 77 million animal units to 96 million.

Tibow emphasized in this context that the increase in animal numbers is not accompanied by a similar growth in productivity.

The challenges of animal husbandry and genetics in the Middle East are no different from the rest of the world, including the fact that some countries in the region have not yet reported the status of their animal genetic resources to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations not.

“It’s likely that the number of breeds at risk is underestimated,” Tebow explained. “The erosion of diversity within the breed can even be a problem in breeds whose total number is still large,” noting that animal husbandry and genetics affect the animals. production by “choosing genetically superior animals to be the parents of the next generation.”

Genetic variation is not only important for increasing production, but also for livestock to adapt to challenges such as climate change, emerging diseases and pressure on feed and water resources as well, Tibow said, adding that if properly managed by genetic improvements along with Improving animal health and nutrition strategies, these resources can improve food security in the region.

The increasing dependence on imported food of animal origin has forced countries in the region to look for innovative, affordable options for the future, including best practices and options for better and more sustainable management of livestock adapted to ecosystems and farming.

Genetic solutions that increase efficiency

With the expected increase in demand for animal products, what is the role of technology and genetics in increasing the efficiency of farms?
Genetic solutions can improve the efficiency of animal production. , plain textCredit: Cogent Breeding Ltd.

In a world facing the effects of climate change and a growing population, earning more from less is an approach that sooner or later everyone will have to adopt, said Eamonn Monaghan, Director of International Sales at Cogent Breeding , Asia Pacific and the Middle East, said. Interview with CNN in Arabic.

The company, which provides genetic solutions that help increase profitability on farms, is one of the UK’s largest suppliers of cattle genetics and supplies its products to nearly 60 countries around the world, including Iran, Turkey, Iraq and Israel.

Monaghan noted that in order to achieve continuous genetic progress among dairy herds, for example, it is necessary to have surrogate calves only bred from the animals that perform best in the system.

To identify these animals, a genomic test, using Cognet’s “PrecisionDNA” system, provides the expected overall performance of each animal at the genetic level, with Monaghan emphasizing that “the reliability of the genetic data is between 65 and 75%. is. “

The DNA precision system also includes numbers in the EcoFeed index, which highlights animals that eat less and produce more, making them more efficient and therefore more profitable.

Genome testing also allows for the identification of expensive and harmful haplotypes that avoid their reproduction.

These solutions can address challenges such as increasing competition for resources such as land and water.

These factors push farmers to become more efficient, and they can do so through the use of genetically superior animals and new technologies, Monaghan said, emphasizing that advances in animal husbandry, genetics and genomics have facilitated a more efficient industry.

Leave a Comment