Farmers have a unique relationship with their livestock. These animals are far more than a product or commodity; they’re life-givers, providing vital nourishment, health and the energy to work.
Growing up in an agricultural community in Argentina, I saw the delicate balance between the health of animals and the economic health of the communities who depend upon them first-hand.
I also saw how any shift in this delicate balance through disease can cause devastation to entire communities. And perhaps nowhere is this more precarious than in Sub-Saharan Africa.
It’s the reason why I was very proud when Elanco launched our East Africa Growth Accelerator (EAGA) project in 2017 following a $3.1m grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, aiming to give smallholder farmers in Tanzania, Uganda and Kenya access to important animal health medicines and provide education on keeping livestock healthy.
In a region where the threat of serious disease is constant, animal medicines are essential but often out of reach of smallholders who earn a minimal income but rely on these animals for their livelihood, and the wellbeing of their families.
The project has come with its fair share of challenges, but we’re now on track to enable more than 240,000 dairy and poultry smallholder farmers to access small-sized quality veterinary products by 2020.
EAGA is part of something bigger for us at Elanco Earlier this year, we released our new CSR platform, Elanco’s Healthy PurposeTM, based around four connected pillars that focus on healthier animals, healthier people, healthier planet and a healthier enterprise. The framework is woven throughout our culture and enables us to realize our vision for food and companionship enriching life – to live our healthy purpose. My healthy purpose clearly links to the impact I can have for farmers with what I do at Elanco; the memory of those rural communities in my early days in Argentina sometimes still influences my business decisions.
At Elanco, we believe it all starts with healthier animals – both livestock and pets, and I fully believe that. Animals are central to addressing global issues like food security and nutrition, human health and wellbeing, and environmental sustainability.
Elanco’s Healthy PurposeTM represents a significant development for our organisation. Our employees are invested in making a difference and our purpose-driven culture is evident in their frequent gifts of their time and expertise to the causes we support.
Personally, this is what continues to inspire me in all I do at Elanco; our people’s passion and our commitment as a company to make a positive impact to societies around the world.
We will continue to support projects and initiatives that empower people with the right tools to lift them out of poverty. Elanco’s Healthy Purpose™ will provide us with the framework to do even more in the future.
Find out more about Elanco’s Healthy Purpose™.