Effect of Technical Interventions on Chicken Productivity and Household Welfare in Selected Villages of Bariadi district, Tanzania
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Abstract: This study was carried out in three selected villages of Bariadi District, Tanzania in June 2012 to evaluate the effect of technical interventions on chicken productivity and household wellbeing. The study involved a cross-sectional survey of 90 randomly chosen project beneficiaries. Data were collected using a semi-structured questionnaire and analyzed using Statistical Package for Social Sciences version 16. Comparison of the test variables before and after interventions showed that interventions resulted in increased average number of birds per household (from 23 to 80 birds, t = 15.8, p < 0.001), reduced average period to attain market weight (from 8 to 6 months, t = 4.58, p < 0.01), and increased average egg production per hen per year (from 56 to 82 eggs, t = 13.65, p < 0.001). The results also showed reduction in mortality rate from the average of 34 – 84% to less than 25% after interventions. On the other hand, household income from poultry enterprise increased from an average of TZS 50,170 to TZS 426, 240 per household per year. These improvements also led into increased household food security, household assets, and ability to meet basic household needs and social services. Nevertheless, prevalence of parasites and diseases and scarcity of feed ingredients were still the major challenges facing the chicken industry. Concerted efforts are needed to control chicken diseases by enhancing local capacity in supply of veterinary services and promoting the use of alternative and cheap feeding ingredients and collective marketing strategy would stimulate chicken farming and improve household income and the welfare of small scale farmers.