While availability of food calories has paralleled human population growth in Rwanda, the supply of highly nutritious foods -such as complete protein, fats, and micronutrients -remain insufficient in the Rwandan diet.

Past research has shown the barriers to Rwandans raising chickens to be a lack of technical support, access to capital, and market access. Therefore, the TwororeInkoko, Twunguke(Kinyarwanda for: “Let’s raise chickens for profit!”) project aims to overcome these barriers through increasing the production of broiler chickens by smallholder farmers.

The 3-year pilot project uses a private-sector train-the-trainer extension model to build capacity of rural Rwandans in efficient poultry production. Chickens are raised in 100 bird flocks on a 9-week cycle (7 weeks grow-out + 2 weeks biosecurity/clean out) by resource-poor smallholders for sale and household consumption, with the goal of enrolling 750 producing households in Musanzedistrict. Through the provision of finance, technical support and guaranteed broiler buyback at the end of each grow-out cycle, the project is creating a sustainable model for small-scale broiler production, which can be scaled up throughout Rwanda and the region.

--  Tom Gill1, Dave Ader1, Amanda Kaeser1, Emily Urban1, Mike Smith1 , Brynn Voy1, Caela O’Connell1, Dayton Lambert1, Patricia Watkins1, Susan Schexnayder1, Eric Bisangwa1, Matthew Karugarama2, and Ritah Nshuti2

1University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture, 2Zamura Feeds Ltd.