The Nigerian population is projected to grow swiftly and undergo widespread transformation over the next thirty years. Experts project that by 2050, the population would double to almost 400 million.
The GDP per capita will almost triple up to around 7,137 USD Purchasing Power Parity. As a result of these imminent changes, the demand for livestock products will rise exponentially: projections are that poultry meat, beef and milk consumption will grow by 253%, 117% and 577%, respectively (FAO GPS, 2018).
With a fast-paced world rapidly driven by technological advancements and innovations, reclining strictly to orthodox practice in animal health care delivery is to say the least counter-productive as the fast-evolving innovation will have to go through unprecedented lag to reach end users. Achieving any tangible advancement in the animal sector however will entail a concerted effort by all stakeholders in the sector to ensure that the nation’s animal holding gets optimal attention, and it becomes truly boisterous. To achieve this in an information driven world, efforts to promote, share and disseminate targeted information must be explored and adapted efficiently for the sector’s common good.
The sheer volume of useful information and knowledge will keep increasing as people keep pushing the frontiers of knowledge; veterinary medicine is no exception. Building algorithms that can guide thoughts and decisions towards making viable decisions is what one of such technological Innovations – VetWiz aims to do. The application, developed by Farm Innovation Nigeria Ltd, a Nigerian agtech company, works on an algorithm that helps veterinary practitioners make invaluable decisions, especially when synergized with the knowledge of the handler. This marriage of technology and veterinary expertise, obviously makes for a much greater impact.
The icing on the cake however is the forum facility in the application, this feature facilitates interactions amongst parties, encouraging users to contribute to topics that impact the livestock sector. They can also create personalized topics on pertinent issues that can be seen through a prism of shared intellectualism. With no limitation to what can be professionally shared, multimedia content can be exchanged to present more vivid depictions of a matter and help tremendously in cross-fertilization of ideas.
Community Animal Health Workers and Paravets are particularly key beneficiaries of the VetWiz forum as they can interact with Veterinarians and other colleagues that can provide more professional insights to challenges encountered on the field. Information intended for the animal owners can also be quickly disseminated through community-based animal health service providers especially to livestock farmers in hard-to-reach locations, this is especially useful in disseminating information on disease outbreaks and urgent actions necessary to prevent avoidable losses.
There is no gainsaying the impact all these would have on the animals who are the ultimate beneficiaries. A happy animal will inadvertently make its owner happy, and everyone just might be happier with higher quality and quantities of livestock products available to everyone for less.