Beef cattle fattening practices, constraints and future potentials in Ethiopia: a review
Cattle are one of the main livestock production components in Ethiopia wherein 70 % of its populations are engaging in traditional cattle production. Next to coffee export, cattle substantially contribute to Ethiopian foreign currency exchanges. The objectives of this review were to synthesize available information on recent cattle fattening practices, challenges and future perspective in Ethiopia. Various methods of fattening practices, feeding systems and feed treatments are conducted by the farmers to feed cattle, reduce the length of fattening period and boost profits. The review identified that feed shortage, shortage of initial working capital, disease and output market and shortage of land as the major constraints of cattle fattening in Ethiopia ranked 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th respectively. The political reforms and peaceful relationships among the neighboring and Middle East countries fostering market accessibility for fattened cattle. The use of mobile drone technology to supply vaccines and establishment of agro-processing industries could also significantly shift the traditional fattening to a market-oriented commercial fattening system and enhance the production capacity of the meat industry.
Keywords: Beef cattle, Fattening practice, Constraints, Potentials, Ethiopia