UR don commits to improve Rwanda livestock in quality milk production and conservation

Following his successful grant proposal with the support of University of Rwanda and Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Mr Jean Baptiste Ndahetuye is working on a project that will develop best practices to enhance dairy cow’s health and milk quality in the Rwandan dairy chain. The grant was awarded by the University of Florida (UF) Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) through the funds of US Agency for International Development (USAID).

Jean Baptiste Ndahetuye and other project leaders who won grants were convened by the University of Florida in Kigali to meet various stokeholds. The aim of the meeting was to introduce principal investigators and collaborators and gather feedback and advice from Rwandan stakeholders to enrich ongoing research projects towards the advancement of livestock sector in Rwanda. 

Mr Ndahetuye during his presentation.

In his presentation, Ndahetuye stated that despite the Government of Rwanda efforts to increase the production of milk there are limitations that hinder the quality and quantity at different levels of milk chain. He mentioned among others the lack of research on dairy animal health and milk pre-and post-harvest best practices. According to him, milk insufficiency and low quality of milk impede the effort to fight malnutrition which eventually leads to public health hazards.

Research investigators and other stakeholders.

Apart from the research component of the project, Ndahetuye also plans to train dairy farmers, Milk Collection Centres managers and technicians, district’s veterinarians and students in best practices for good udder health and best milk production practices.

The University of Florida was represented by Dr. Adegbola T. Adesogan the Director, Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Livestock Systems. In his remarks, he said that their funds are meant to support research that addresses the constraints to livestock production and consumption of livestock products in Rwanda. He added that the meeting was an opportunity for project leaders to meet the important stakeholders in Rwanda so that they can provide contextual information that will guide researchers.

Dr. Adegbola’s remarks during the meeting.

Ndahetuye is a Lecturer at the University of Rwanda, College of Agriculture, Animal Sciences and Veterinary Medicine. In 2015, he was awarded a PhD scholarship by UR-Sweden programme and is now pursuing his studies in the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. In 2016, he was among the three people whose proposals won research grants supported by the University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. His project is entitled “Milk production practices, udder health and the impact on milk quality, safety and processability in Rwanda”.

Group discussion.

Story by:
Murangwa Darius
Senior Communication Officer 
Corporate Communication Office
University of Rwanda.