Agrifood Economics

Analysing beef price incentives to strengthen policies for production and exports in Uganda

Technical note
Year: 2023
Author(s): Nkuingoua Nana, J.C. & Pernechele, V.;
Publisher: FAO

In Uganda, 58 percent of households depend on livestock for their livelihoods, with cattle being the most important livestock subsector in the country. Despite natural pastures, water resources, and big demand in national and world markets, beef production in Uganda grew by only 1 percent in the last decade, and lags behind local demand.

In the last decade, the government has adopted several policies within the framework of the National Development Plan, aimed at increasing domestic beef production and exports.

This report assesses the effects of policy support on the beef sector in Uganda over the last four years (2017–2020), and also includes previous analysis on live cattle for the period 2005–2016. To measure price incentives, the study relies on renowned indicators; the nominal rate of protection, nominal rate of assistance and the market development gap.

The results reveal that in the past (2011–2016) breeders were penalized by low prices, while recently they benefitted from prices above the international-equivalent, mainly due to restrictions on cattle movement due to a foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) outbreak, which increased domestic prices. The persistent gaps between domestic and international prices can also be explained by the very limited price transmission and weak market integration of the beef value chain in Uganda. FMD is a critical issue to tackle to improve beef commercialization and competitiveness, together with the significant value chain inefficiencies, such as high transport costs and the presence of informal fees, that still hinder marketing and profitability of this sector.

Publication type: Country case study
Country coverage: Uganda
Region: Africa