The Nigerian Institute of Animal Science was established by the National Assembly Act No. 26 of 2007 under the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development as a regulatory agency for Animal Science practice with powers to regulate all matters pertaining to Animal husbandry in Nigeria. The Act is predicated on 3 core mandates viz:
The Institute was established in response to the unfortunate low level per capita animal protein intake (10gm/head as against 35gm/head) as well as the yearnings and lamentations of livestock farmers inundated with adulterated inputs, exploitative investors and poor development of the value chain. Also, the quality of research and training in our institutions of higher learning was taking a nose-dive and worse still research infrastructure is poorly developed and ill-equipped. There was no demonstrable plan to achieve self sufficiency in animal production through animal breeding and genetics, animal nutrition, animal management, processing, preservation, distribution and marketing. Standards for professional practice and industry regulation were absent. There was no agency on ground to set and regulate the Professional Animal husbandry practice standards and regulations for Nigeria. All these informed the establishment of the Nigerian Institute of Animal Science.
The Nigerian Institute of Animal Science (NIAS) commenced operations in 2008.
The Nigerian Institute of Animal Science Act, Part 1 Section 2 (h) & (i) mandates the Institute to regulate all matters pertaining to Animal Husbandry in Nigeria, as well as advising and encouraging enactment of laws and regulations for the industry. All these require professional practice and industry standards/regulations which are currently absent.
Climate change issues and global warming have indicted livestock operations for emitting 18% of total Green House Gases for which the FAO has instructed new production techniques and management by all countries to mitigate the problem. This requires an agency that will regulate livestock operations and enforce standards. Standards for operations and professional practice must thus be set.
.The Nigerian Livestock Farmer has experienced various setbacks over the years mainly due to the use of sub-standard inputs. Commercialization of the livestock sector will remain difficult without regulations and standards.
The Institute in doing this identified the array of activities in the various sectors of the Livestock Industry with the view of taking a holistic approach in the process of establishing Standards for the Nigerian Animal Husbandry Industry. The standards developed by the Institute are expected to guide the operations of the Industry. Such Standards are expected to improve the efficiency of production, stimulate growth in the industry and address the issue of Animal Feed Safety, Food Security and Food Safety.
Feed raw materials Evaluation:
Available raw materials for the Feed Manufacturing sector was audited for their proximate nutrient values and qualities in terms of acceptability and health risk assessments for use in Animal Feeding. This activity must be a continuous exercise to control adulteration and mitigate farmer’s losses.
Feed Manufacturing sector:
Standards were set for Minimum Operating Standards for Feed plants, Design and Equipment.