Agriculture. West Region Takes Lead in Pig Farming

The western region in Cameroon is the largest pig producer with a herd estimated at 3 500 000 heads; it provides 4/5 of pigs marketed in the country.

Johnson ETAPE

This production is therefore of considerable importance both for producers who derive substantial income and for urban consumers Babadjou is located in this western highlands with nearly 55,624 inhabitants in 2016 and an area of approximately 161 km2. Pig breeding there is the second income generating activity after maize cultivation for the rural population. In the locality, pigs are sold in markets at any stage of growth when the farmer needs money. Government statistics estimated the pigs population at about 600 000 heads in that area.

In the Strategic Document for Growth and Employment in Cameroon, the livestock sub-sector is expected to increase in supply of animal products to meet the domestic need in animal protein requirements and give surplus for exports. To achieve this goal, the Government planned in the short term to develop the breeding of short cycle species, to professionalize the training and structuring of producers.

Despite the government good will, farmers are still faced with many constraints in animal husbandry such as health, nutrition, and management techniques. The most important being the cost of the food which is a serious obstacle to the achievement of these objectives, as it represents 70% of total investments. So far, pig farming in Cameroon has reached a peak of 30,000 tons of meat per year with a projected 40,000 tons in 2016 and 45,000 tons by the year 2020. In order to meet the increasing demand of pork, there is still recourse to massive import of pigs, mainly from Chad (42 billion CFA francs/ year) . This study was therefore conducted to evaluate the feed management in pig production in the locality of Babadjou and an attempt for improvement.

Babadjou village is a large pig producing area and there is a multitude of usable agricultural residues for pigs. Pig farming in this locality is a culture passed down from generations to generations. The extensive production system is mostly practiced with agricultural products and household waste based diets associated with scarcity or inadequate veterinary care. Babadjou is located at about 7 km from Mbouda in the Department of Bamboutos, West Region of Cameroon on the National road No. 6 connecting Bafoussam to Bamenda.

The geographic coordinates of Babadjou taken by the Global Positioning System (GPS) extend from 05° 37′ to 05°40′ north latitude and 10° 04′ to 10° 10′ east longitude. It is characterized by a long rainy season from mid-March to mid-November and a short dry season from mid-November to mid-March. The average annual rainfall is between 1500 and 1830 mm while average temperatures range between 24 and 35°C.

The village was divided into three (3) areas namely Toumaka, Djinso and Kombou. The population size of pigs farmers in these three (3) zones was about 5316 households [7] out of which forty (40) were randomly selected per zone for the survey. The only requirement being to have a herd of at least 2 (two) adult pigs.

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