Genetics: Productive chickens

An indigenous breed of African chicken with more meat and egg productivity – on par with breeds such as Sasso from France and Kuroiler from India – has been developed after 20 years of research by Nigeria’s Federal University of Agriculture, Abekuta (FUNAAB). Seventeen local breeds with higher body weights and blood lines resistant to diseases such as Avian leukosis were selected, multiplied, and crossbred to produce FUNAAB-Alpha. While local breeds weigh about 0.9 kg when mature and produce 40-60 eggs a year, FUNAAB-Alpha weighs between 1.2-1.5 kg and produces 200-250 eggs a year. Through the African Chicken Genetic Gains collaboration, led by the International Livestock Research Institute, the new breed has been distributed to 2,500 farmers across Nigeria since 2016.

The Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation (CTA) is a joint international institution of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States and the European Union (EU). CTA operates under the framework of the Cotonou Agreement and is funded by the EU.