Livestock plays an important role in the social, cultural and economic environment of Tongan communities. Indeed many, of the important social and cultural events in island life cannot be properly carried out without the slaughter and presentation of livestock in sufficient numbers.
Livestock Division works in partnership with livestock farmers to develop prosperous, efficient and sustainable animal health and production systems, producing healthy animals and safe products for food security and income generation.
Improving livestock sector will mean less reliance on imports, higher rural incomes, meeting our food security needs, and assistance with meeting national development goals.
These are the major activities and projects currently undergoing at Livestock Division, located at Tokomololo.
To support, foster and enable productive and sustainable meat and livestock industries through effective and efficient advisory services and veterinary services.
The DOA through the livestock division has an equally great challenge of maintaining the sustainable production of livestock in Tonga while at the same time facilitate expansion to meet the growing demand for local meat products. Another key aim of the department is to provide animal health, regulatory and technical service to maintain and improve current animal health status and prevent the introduction of exotic pest and disease. The department has a key role to play in the push towards making the poultry industry self sufficient within next 3 years.
The program addresses the nutrition of livestock for production of meat, egg and milk. It also addresses problems of poor pasture varieties in Tonga by identifying better adapted varieties and promote good pasture management practices for sustainable livestock production and productivity throughout the year. It also aims to look at options of producing local feeds for pigs and poultry.
The main objective of the program is to improve and increase production of quality pig breeds available to farmers for upgrading of their breeding stock. DOA aims to breed, sell and distribute improved breeders to farmers and to continue introducing of improved breeds to improve the performance of local breeds. DOA will train the farmers to graduate from subsistence to semi and commercial production to increase the local meat production.
This program is designed to stimulate the growth of the local sheep industry through upgrading the current breed from Fiji by introducing new breeds. DOA also plans to implement an assistance program aimed at promoting the development of the smallholder sheep famers throughout Tonga.
This program aims to upgrading the livestock research station in Vaini with special emphasis on improving genetic of breeder animals in order to provide new improved breed to farmers for higher production.
The upgrading of laboratory equipment is an important factor for development of livestock industry in terms of compliance with international standards.