Costs and benefits of a foot and mouth disease free zone
This PPG analysed the costs and benefits of establishing a Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) free zone in Tanzania to help inform policy-makers on the feasibility of such an investment. The study focused on the Rukwa region, where agro-pastoral production is a predominant economic activity. The analysis included estimation of the costs of FMD for small-scale farmers and ranchers, the outbreak control costs, costs of vaccination and surveillance, and the benefits from avoiding disease costs.
The work revealed that the proposed FMD-free zone is currently unlikely to be cost-effective for various reasons, including the current lack of market opportunities. Substantial benefits from export trade – and a price increase of more than 50% for meat exports – would be needed for the programme to break even. The report made a number of recommendations to the government and private sector. These included improving the national FMD control plan, better connecting demand and supply across the value chain, rolling out the existing Livestock Identification and Traceability System, and promoting public-private partnerships. In view of the challenges and findings, the study proposed exploring the option of Commodity Based Trade and a value chain approach to producing FDM-safe deboned beef from an endemic area.
The veterinary services in Tanzania discussed and endorsed the main findings and recommendations of the feasibility study. Efforts are underway to follow-up on the recommendations in collaboration with the relevant stakeholders, and to mobilize additional external support to support this effort.