WRSA - Rabbit production in developing countries

Report of the exhibition
by the Rabbit Breeders Association of KENYA

by S. Oseni
President, SSA-WRSA Branch


Date of exhibition: 27th January, 2010 (all day).

Organizers: Rabbit Breeders Association of Kenya, in conjunction with the Ministry of Livestock Development, Kenya.

Venue of the exhibition: Thika Municipal Stadium, Thika, Kenya

Theme of the Exhibition:
"Enhanced rabbit marketing for sustainable agribusiness and improved livelihoods".


Detailed report: The exhibition attracted many participants mainly from the Central Province of Kenya, including Nyeri, Karatina, Ruiru, Gatundu while a few came from the Rift Valley Province (e.g. from Laikipia West, as far as Rumuruti Division). As shown in the pictures, attendance at the exhibition was superb, with all the exhibition stands amply surrounded by curious members of the public who were interested in getting more information about rabbit keeping. During the exhibition, participants and enthusiasts were busy taking notes, asking questions and making contacts for future communications and follow-up visits. On display were different rabbit stocks (meat and wool rabbits), cages (different designs and placements), feeds, forages, rabbit meat and pelt, vet drugs for rabbits, educational materials (books and pamphlets) on rabbit handling and management.


Various stocks on rabbits (mostly heterogeneous rabbit stocks and Angora rabbits!) were on display. Members of the public in attendance were given free tutorials and information (verbal, leaflets, posters and banners) on rabbit management, including feeding, disease control, slaughter, processing and marketing and value addition through pelt processing.


Forages such as Desmodium trifolium, Trichandria spp. and sweet potato vines for rabbits were also shown at the exhibition site. Commercial feeds in form of pellets from Wonder Feeds Ltd., a feed manufacturer based in Nakuru were on display. Veterinary companies such as Ultravetis East Africa Ltd., and Ultimate Vetserve Ltd. were present at the exhibition. Financial institutions and cooperatives (including Equity Bank) were in attendance to assure potential investors of possibilities and options for financial support in rabbit enterprises. Even the media houses including The Standard, a leading newspaper group in Kenya. This newspaper featured a full coverage of the event in its Feb. 3rd, 2010 edition. According to the report in the Standard, about 2,000 rabbit farmers turned up at the exhibition in Thika. The report further noted that about 1,000 rabbit farmers in Kenya, market rabbits worth Sh 875,000 (approximately $11,666 USD) per month. (see the complete article)


The day-long exhibition provided an opportunity for a lot of exchange, discussions and practical exposure in all aspects of rabbit production, processing, marketing, as well as options for sourcing credit facilities for would-be entrepreneurs. Further, information was provided about Rabbit Slaughter Houses in Gigil and Murang'a towns.


The Rabbit Breeders Association of Kenya has plans to create viable rabbit enterprises for members in the country. One way to actualize this was to organize an all-inclusive rabbit exhibition, involving key stakeholders (e.g., producers, feed millers, vet companies, media, financial institutions, and cooperative groups). For more details, please see below the pictures taken during the exhibition.

Photos taken by S. Oseni, during the exhibition

Crowds at the rabbit exhibition in Thika, Kenya

A vest worn by an official of the Rabbit Breeders Association of Kenya

Rabbit enthusiasts watching various displays at the exhibition

Rabbit stocks at the Show

Different rabbit stocks on display

Rabbit stocks on display

Rabbit stocks and cages on display

Rabbit stocks and cages on display

Rabbit cages and stocks on display

Angora rabbits on display at the Thika exhibition

Sample of rabbit forages on display

Rabbit feeds/pellets on display

Rabbit feeds on display

Rabbit feeds on display
Drugs for rabbits

Different rabbit stocks on display

Rabbit meat on display at the Thika exhibition

Rabbit skin processing

Some notes on rabbit management on display

Even the credit and cooperative groups were not left out

Pictures describing value addition in backyard rabbit production units in Kenya