Fiji – climate change
Fiji is highly vulnerable to the effects of climate-related disasters. In 2016, over 60% of the population were adversely affected by Cyclone Winston, the worst recorded tropical cyclone to make landfall in the South Pacific. Climate-related disasters are increasing in frequency and intensity in Fiji, and with such devastating effects on infrastructure and food security, many vulnerable households have insufficient time to recover.
A key solution – improving local chickens
Fijians rely heavily on imports for up to 50% of their food consumption. Poultry ranks second to seafood as the most important protein source for South Pacific Nations, but the industry is dominated by commercial factory-type farms completely reliant on imported chicks. These are poorly suited to village conditions, require expensive imported feeds to ensure productivity, and do not breed well in local conditions, further exacerbating food insecurity. Through selective breeding of local chickens, SELF has created a diverse and more productive breed that is well adapted to local conditions and that great potential for improving food and nutrition security in Fiji and other Pacific islands. During the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic the importation of day old chicks and feeds have virtually stopped, making the project even more important for food security at this time.