Knowledge for better food systems

The International Livestock Research Institute monthly brief explores ‘Livestock and Climate Change’

The November edition of the Livestock Exchange brief by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) explored ‘Livestock and Climate Change’.  Philip Thornton, Mario Herrero and Polly Ericksen prepared an issue brief on the relations between climate change and livestock systems in developing countries.

The authors outline ways that GHG emissions can be reduced from livestock systems through technologies, policies and incentives.  They also discuss options that livestock keepers can adopt to adapt to climate change and cope with increasing climate variability. These include technological (drought-tolerant fodder crops), behavioural (changes in dietary choice), managerial (different livestock management practices), and policy (market and infrastructural development) options.


Thornton, P., Herrero, M. and Ericksen, P. 2011. Livestock and climate change. Livestock Exchange Issue Brief 3. Nairobi, Kenya: ILRI.

The November brief can be read here. 

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While some of the food system challenges facing humanity are local, in an interconnected world, adopting a global perspective is essential. Many environmental issues, such as climate change, need supranational commitments and action to be addressed effectively. Due to ever increasing global trade flows, prices of commodities are connected through space; a drought in Romania may thus increase the price of wheat in Zimbabwe.

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