Main content area

Breeding objectives for pigs in Kenya. II: economic values incorporating risks in different smallholder production systems

Mbuthia, Jackson Mwenda, Rewe, Thomas Odiwuor, Kahi, Alexander Kigunzu
Tropical animal health and production 2015 v.47 no.2 pp. 361-367
animal health, body weight, dressing percentage, economic valuation, farmers, farrowing, feed intake, genetic improvement, herd size, livestock breeding, models, piglets, prices, production technology, profitability, risk, selection index, sows, survival rate, swine production, variance, Kenya
This study estimated economic values for production traits (dressing percentage (DP), %; live weight for growers (LWg), kg; live weight for sows (LWs), kg) and functional traits (feed intake for growers (FEEDg), feed intake for sow (FEEDs), preweaning survival rate (PrSR), %; postweaning survival (PoSR), %; sow survival rate (SoSR), %, total number of piglets born (TNB) and farrowing interval (FI), days) under different smallholder pig production systems in Kenya. Economic values were estimated considering two production circumstances: fixed-herd and fixed-feed. Under the fixed-herd scenario, economic values were estimated assuming a situation where the herd cannot be increased due to other constraints apart from feed resources. The fixed-feed input scenario assumed that the herd size is restricted by limitation of feed resources available. In addition to the tradition profit model, a risk-rated bio-economic model was used to derive risk-rated economic values. This model accounted for imperfect knowledge concerning risk attitude of farmers and variance of input and output prices. Positive economic values obtained for traits DP, LWg, LWs, PoSR, PrSR, SoSR and TNB indicate that targeting them in improvement would positively impact profitability in pig breeding programmes. Under the fixed-feed basis, the risk-rated economic values for DP, LWg, LWs and SoSR were similar to those obtained under the fixed-herd situation. Accounting for risks in the EVs did not yield errors greater than ±50 % in all the production systems and basis of evaluation meaning there would be relatively little effect on the real genetic gain of a selection index. Therefore, both traditional and risk-rated models can be satisfactorily used to predict profitability in pig breeding programmes.