GFAR blog

YAP Proposal #307: Livestock to end hunger (Chamuka Thebulo, Malawi)


I am 30 years old from Kalolo Village in Traditional Authority Njombwa, Kasungu district, Malawi. I am pursuing a Master’s of Science degree in Agriculture and Applied Economics at Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUANAR), Bunda Campus, Malawi.

Currently I am implementing a project concerning integrating livestock (exotic pig) and maize production in Malawi. The project is about raising Tri-Stars and landrace pig breeds with the first priority being to produce fertilizer from the dung. Adding less chemical fertilizer and instead using dung and fertile tree leaves solves the problems brought about by inorganic fertilizer.

As of now I managed to apply this fertilizer to maize crops and am expecting a high yield of maize this year without application of additional inorganic fertilizers. The idea is to produce more exotic pigs which can produce more dung to help provide more fertilizer to the community. More fertilizers will help to produce more maize and end hunger, because maize is a staple food in most countries in Africa.

I am proud that those farmers that got this kind of fertilizer for free in the community last year have had a very good maize harvest in their fields. The application of this fertilizer helps to keep moisture in the soil so the effect of drought is very little.

Besides that, the project is able to recruit youth from the same community to help to solve a problem of unemployment rate in Malawi. Currently, 10 youth have been employed and by the end of this year about 30-50 will be employed. By the end of 2017 about 80-150 people will be employed and by 2019 more than 1000 youth will be employed as a part of this project.

The project is sustainable in the way that all the pens are fenced and at a distance of over 100 m. We allow only employees to enter in the pen with well protected work suits to ensure that they remain disease free. In addition, some of income that is generated from the project will be for expanding it in the future.

A business plan that we wrote in our group for an entrepreneurship class when I was doing my BSc degree motivated me so much. I saw the cash flow and fast growth of exotic pigs and the issue of food insecurity and unemployment rate, and how agriculture plays a great role in Malawi.

ChamukaThebuloThe project as of now gives me income since I have already started selling some of the pigs. The fertilizer that I make also brings income because I am selling each bag at USD $10. The community is benefiting a lot as well because I am supplying cheap fertilizer that will allow them to produce more maize to end hunger as maize is a staple food in Malawi.

Besides that, the project is employing many youth from the community and hence reducing unemployment rate in the community. The project is intended to rear exotic pigs (Tri-Star’s and landrace) and produce fertilizer from the dung. Using this fertilizer more maize will be produced.

The project is also intended to make a water reservoir to integrate livestock, fish and crops to ensure sustainability and success due to climate change issues.  Currently the project had already started and I have constructed pens, bought 14 pigs, employed 10 workers and produced fertilizer for maize production.

The factors for success of my project are employing more than 1000 employees, producing more fertilizers and keeping more pigs at the farm. These factors will be measured in the way that if more people are food secure in the community because they produce plenty of maize using fertilizer, that the project is producing more fertilizer, and if more youth and other adults are employed, it will mean that the project is a success.

The grant will be used to construct two pens for about USD $1700, buy feed for about USD $800, buy additional pigs for about USD $700, pay salaries at about USD $1100, buy bags for fertilizer for about USD $500 and cover transport costs for about USD $200, all of which will be completed by the end of 2016. This will help to increase productivity of the project at the end.


Blogpost and picture submitted by Chamuka Thebulo (Kasungu, Malawi) – dicksonthebulo[at]

The content, structure and grammar is at the discretion of the author only.

This post is published as proposal #307 of “YAP” – our “Youth Agripreneur Project”.

The first selection of the winners will be based on the number of comments, likes and views each proposal gets.

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“YAP” is part of the #GCARD3 process, the third Global Conference on Agricultural Research for Development.

148 thoughts on “YAP Proposal #307: Livestock to end hunger (Chamuka Thebulo, Malawi)”

    1. yaah ithink t will help the community to stop complaining about expensiviness of chemical fertilizer n produce more maize

  1. A good example of a young entrepreneur creating employment opportunities for other young people in Malawi. Good work Chamuka!

  2. This is an impactful project sir. given how expensive inorganic fertilizers are in malawi, we really need projects of this nature. the nutrition aspect of the project is also very vital. we have one the highest malnutrition rates in the world. i wish you the best of success

    1. yaah we should start ourselves as youth to deal with unemployment rate we should not just complain about job scarcity yet we HV potential to create job ourselves. the book of” poor da and reach dad “motivated me as well

  3. Good work Thebulo…thumbs up…you can also consider generating energy from the same dung through biogas hence providing altenative source of for both cooking and lighting thus reducing the use of fuel wood which at the end conserving the environment in your community

    1. that’s brilliant Idea I will consider t since t will also help community due to climate issues nowady t help to reduce the effect too

  4. This is good news and just so great. Agriculture is the way to go more especially enterpreneurship. and jus a quick question please; o just want to know whats so special with pigs and to be specific the breed u ave chosen amongst other vaeious livestock and breeds? and whats it is the nutrient percentages contained in the dung from the mentioned breed?

  5. organic fertilizer is trully the way to go if the fight against hunger is to be won. As young men we trully need to take part. Your ideas are insipiring, I am compelled to try.

  6. its a very good idea and this project can help more Malawians since fertilizer price has gone up that a poor farmer from Kalolo in kasungu can not afford to buy. i like the idea ,and i would wish you make it zero waste .I hope you know what I mean by zero waste.

    1. yaah that’s ensuring that every waste should not be left unused to avoid polluting the environment. I will do that big

  7. This is a nice development, particularly the part where you are processing the manure. Which I believe it we can adopt indigenous ideas like those we can’t talk of low yields due to lack of fertilizer

    1. yaap that is the main aim of project upon since that in most countries in the world issues of hunger trigger the development since governments and donors are busy use money for searching of food instead of using them in other aspects of development

  8. This is wonderful idea chamuka. If the country is to move out of food insecurity and poverty such ideas are to be supported because among others, it is cost effective, environmental friendly, easily managed and many other.

  9. its nice realistic and motivating idea from young man..hopefully your objective on this project will be fullfilled and cant wait to see it through…..wish you best!!!!!!!!!

    1. thanks a lot according to my objectives soon will be achieved, one of it is to assist countries to end hunger through application of this fertilizer to produce more maize at lowest cost

    1. I have already started teaching them how to use this fertilizer through outreach programme I have in this project. besides that since in one bag of fertilizer I put 5 seeds of tree that torelate with crops and once add this fertilizer they plant trees together since farmers most of time are not willing to plant trees separately and I teach them about this and they very happy as well to reduce climate change effects since currently they know about climate change n its consequences

  10. This is a good project which will definitely raise status of farmers because they will be able to access cheap yet highly fertile fertilizer. Let’s work and strive that this project is available to many of our farmers

  11. You have implemented my dream, this is my dream come true. They say great share their way of thinking. Thebulo you will grow big.

  12. Wow. This project is worth supporting, especially that inorganic fertiliser constitutes a relatively large, if not the largest share of the cost of producing maize in the majority of Africa. Most if the farmers I know, especially in the Southern Province of Zambia can’t grow maize without inorganic fertiliser. You know hybrid maize – it needs inorganic fertiliser for you to get substantial yields. In some cases, soils have been deteriorated thanks to inordinate use inorganic fertilisers over time. I need to get more from you brother. If you don’t mind, I will email you so you send me more information on this topic. I find it a mark of ingenuity.

    1. don’t worry u can ask more question I will answer u since its practical thing doing not just theory

  13. i support the idea because project can the cost of production among farmers since organic fertiliser is very cheap, environmental friendly( no land pollution) locally available. it can also reduce malnutrition amongst malawians by providing proteins et al. thus malawians who get little can have an access of buying cheap pork almost 3times a week. maize bran from maize production can be used to feed livestock and manure from livestock can be used for crop production and acheiving hunger reduction

  14. I agree that this is a welcome i dea and this technology making organic fertilizer if being adopted by many farmers on both rainy season and irrigation farming we will be food secure..

    1. yaah most countries in Africa that us maize as staple food they experience great cost of producing it hence they abandon yo other crops but this will reduce cost and motivated farmers as well to grow more maize reaching food security

  15. I am impressed by what you are currently doing as well as your short and long term goals. However could you be specific interms of gender, of the 10 youths employed, how many are boys and how many are girls? And of course from the 1000 employees you are targeting, could you categorise interms of Men, women, girls, boys. And any plans on reaching out to needy people in the community?

    1. gender issue was also considered its 50:50 since I have five girls n five boys that help each other to work well. to reach the needy I HV aplan to subsidize this fertilizer only to needy in my community that they can access them at lowest price like erlder n orphans

      1. Thanks Chamuka, i like that. I am looking forward to visiting the project so soon to learn from you. You have inspired me.

  16. I support the proposal because it is given financial support for capital withe the sustainability plans as the author has put it, it’s beneficial to the entire community including the youth in terms of reducing unemployment rate and food insecure

  17. The spirit of hard work is in you, am sure that you can achieve your target even without external support. Good work.

    1. kkkkkk yaah we should start ourselves to work hard to develop our nations n don’t wait someone to develop even our families that can’t be possible

  18. This is a nice project you have embarked on. I really wish Malawi had alot of people who are this innovative, I bet by now our economy would be somewhere else. And I like the whole Idea cause its very realistic in the context of Malawian communities. I think alot of poor farmers who make large percentage of Malawian farmers will benefit from this. I Wish good all the best Mr Thebulo.

    1. thanks Miss msiska, you alot of developing countries including malawi currently are fancing challenges due to wastage of time on food issues and this will make many countries to concentrate on other issues of development not hunger issues with this project

  19. I Support The Project Because It Saves As A Relief In The Community Due To The Following Reasons:unemployment Rate Is Reduced,the Issue Of Depending On Inorganic Fertilizer Heavily Remains History In Our Community Since People Are Using The Dung Of The Pigs In As Far As Fertilizer Is Concerned,therefore,keep It Up

    1. you the issue of inorganic fertilizer brought alot of consquences like soil degradation, high price,subsidies of farm inputs which lead to the most developing countries continue to be called developing countries because they focus on dealing with problems instead of dealing with infrastructures as part of development as well

  20. What A Good Idea!Really,that Idea Brings A Relief In Our Community As Unemployment Rate Has Dropped And Heavy Dependance On Inorganic Fertilizer Has Been Reduced,so Maintain Bringing Such Good Ideas For The Prosperity Of The Community As Well As The Nation

    1. yaah am already doing it currently since i make feed at home through this formular maize bran, fish,soy bean cake, premix, MCP as well as salt which has similar nutrition content like the one they sell in shops, besides that,locally available vegetables and food remains in secondary schools reduce the cost of feeding these exotic pigs

  21. Good idea,considering how expensive inorganic fertilizer is on our country and also reducing the unemployment rate part of this project. thumbs up Mr Thebulo…….

  22. Very problem oriented and it really realistic and realistically addresses the issues affecting the community to core. Inorganic fertilizer is a mammoth problem for the majority of community members hence the subsidy which doesn’t get to the people mostly and come late hence underutilized. What if the people have a source they for sure know is accessible like this? It’s surely going to benefit them a lot. On employment to the youth, this is a master idea because the youth are a powerful work force and with them directly benefitting financially you have a huge hungry man power which will drive the program at an exponential rate to it’s goal faster. Will just need to give more information to the community to understand how good these fertilizers are so they can make the switch. Otherwise thumbs up genius. Waiting to borrow from u this idea

    1. yaah i have already started teaching people around community how important it is because I also add five seeds of trees in one bag to ensure that they plant trees as well, this is the part that they ask alot of questions why am doing this. and currently they have appreciated the important of it since some of seeds are the one that increase fertility in the soil as well as fruit trees so that they can sell at the end to increase their returns

  23. pigs HV high fecundity rate n provide very dung with high fertile n the growth rate is very fast . besides that that breed gives high amount of dung n quality one since they always kept in pen with clean floor n they also have high price on market since they grow very big n quality poke without grt smell which most buyers want to make even sausage .about percentage of nutrition am about to develop yet since I HV just started since some documents written about nutrition will b proved

  24. This is very nice and motivating to us. You are doing great brother. Thumbs up Thebulo!!!!!!!!

  25. This is very nice and motivating to us (youths). You are doing great brother, thumbs up CHAMUKA THEBULO!!!!!!!!!!

  26. This is very nice and motivating to us (youths). You are doing great great brother. Thumbs up THEBULO!!!!!!!!!!!

  27. This is a good project. I like the idea of producing more organic fertilizer from pig’s dung as it will improve the soil fertility naturally. Thumb up!

  28. I have already started teaching them how to use this fertilizer through outreach programme I have in this project. besides that since in one bag of fertilizer I put 5 seeds of tree that torelate with crops and once add this fertilizer they plant trees together since farmers most of time are not willing to plant trees separately and I teach them about this and they very happy as well to reduce climate change effects since currently they know about climate change n its consequences

  29. Wow. This is what Malawi as a country needs, Young people with a vision to develop this nation. Mr Chamuka this is great and i fully support this project.

  30. This is what Malawi as a nation needs, youths with a vision. Mr Thebulo u r one of the few youths with a vision and i support your project because its short and long term impacts will improve the livehood of some people especially youths in targeted area. Bravo. Keep it up

  31. Thats A Nice Research, This Will Help In Reducing Food Insecurity, Un Emproyment & Will Also Increase Nutrition In Malawi As Well As WorldWide. Keep On Reseaching More Than This, Chemical Fertilise Is So Expensive Nowadays That Only Few Farmers Are Managing To Purchase,

    1. yaah prince and since farmers they do complain about plants take along time to start using it and labour for organic fertilizer but i have overcome them by processing them first and add little inorgainc fertilizer to speed up process and no farmers is complaining now about this fertilizer because its easy to be used by plants and labour effective

  32. i like the idea very much. seems realistic and measurable. got to learn some things from this

  33. I am feeling like young entrepreneurs rising in Africa to combat hunger and poverty. these problems are stagnating African’s economy and if no solutions are going to be provided, Africa will have no hope of good development. I was very impressed learning from this young entrepreneur that the main problem that is causing all these problems is expensive farm inputs fertilizer inclusive. animal production pig farming to be specific will not only supply cheap pork meet to the growing population but also provide cheap source of manure to the farmers. I wish we could all have the very same zeal in making Malawi and Africa as whole a best place to leave.

  34. Innovation, concern for the common good, respect for the environment, and the list goes on. I am amazed by this project and its multifaceted nature. I wholeheartedly congratulate you and hope that additional funding will soon arrive in order to further expand the project and the number of lives it affects.

  35. I apreciate your project becoz you are contributing to the economic growth of the society and at the same time at a national level

    1. yaah it is my wish to assist the community and reach almost every country that take maize as stapple food to make use of this fertilizer

  36. Very good idea my brother Thebulo. You can also consider expanding this in the future a make it complete Organic Farmi entity. The dung xan also b to produce biofuels like methane which to c generate income whilst minimising deforestation rate in Malawi.

    1. yaah point taken into consideration, this will help to be more efficiency of my project Enerst and ensure zero waste

    1. point taken Dearborn because as time goes on more and more pigs will be kept and more fertilizer will be produced hence other dung will be used for biogas to reduces deforastration. that’s brilliant idea

  37. Wow!I Like Your Plan,so I Encourage You To Carry On The Work Which You Have Started,proud Of U!!

  38. Malawi needs such entrepreneurs to accelerate the social economic development whilst fighting the unprecedented unemployment among the youths who are the lion’s share in our population congratulations Chamuka Thebulo for stepping out if the crowd let’s make a difference

  39. Good ideas Chamuka. Creating job opportunity for young pple is a good and welcome idea. Hope it will take into consideration gender issues. Thumbs up.

    1. yaah even now Lydia am having 50:50 ratio between males and females considering that when we say youth are under unemployment it does not concerned males only but both males and females. hence already taken in board

  40. malawi really needs such briliant ideas for our sustainable development. your ideas are good i strongly support ur project. i pray it grows exponetially for fast development of country malawi…

  41. Good work Mr Chamuka. I really like your ideas. Africa needs brilliant young entrepreneurs like you to develop.

    1. yes Allexander since we should not wait untill the future comes lets start developing our nations

  42. Young Agripreneurs…. The bright future of the youth and Malawian nation. Thebulo I like your project.

  43. I really like the idea . Generally to achieve food security there is need to integrate crop and livestock systems as this reduce agriculture’s negative environmental impacts.

    1. yes sharif because most of issues that we are facing nowdays are due to environmental degradation leading to food insecurity and unemployment hence you cant just talk about food insecurity and unemployment withought considering the root cause hence this project is try first the root cause the problem

  44. this is a very good project mr Thebulo i lyk it so much and i hope it will also help to reduce polution which result from the use of chemical fertilizer at the same time it will also help in reducing malnutrition since we will have enough food in malawi and we will be employed in it. How i wish malawi could have more youth of these plan, our country could be so nyc by now.

    1. Yaah pollution will b reduced since inorganic fertilizer is vry little in the process of formation of this kind of fertilizer hence ensure no pollution

  45. Great mr!…..that would really help the farmers grow their crops at a reduced cost of inputs…and now adays people are liking such produce grown by organic means.

  46. Africa needs youth’s like you who can venture into agroprenuership and employ more young guys… I want to see you in South Africa

  47. This is so wonderful and its a genius idea.You the man!.am doing the same stuff after Bsc.,so watch out.hahahahaha

  48. Wow what an innovation, indeed looking at the problems the country is going through this project would help to achieve food security, environmental management and reduce rates of unemployment hence i strongly believe if this project is fully funded it will provide solutions to some of the problems the country is passing through. In my view i think that this knowledge should indeed be translated to local community members who are ultra poor and therefore would like to congratulate you Mr. Chamuka Thebulo for such a wonderful project and I wish you all the best as you implement.

  49. What a brilliant innovation from a potential agripreneur! Despite being sustainable and environmental friendly this project is affordable as many farmers will be able to implement because of its cost friendliness! You have a viable idea here, Chamuka!

  50. I think you have a great idea. Only think the 10 dollar per bag price of your fertilizer is on the higher side still. I also think your numbers of expected employees are not very realistic. Generally at your scale the number should be less unless if these people will be self reliant not looking forward to monthly salaries. The use of pigs in such projects may hinder adoption in people of Islamic and Adventist faiths. I think it would be better to think of alternatives too.

    All in all this is one of the best ideas. I wish you all the best.

    1. The number of employees to the project is still good because some do work on the cibstruction site like drawing water from the well, bricklayers, n others are for feeding n maize garden since am doing both . on issue of fertilizer price i will consider that i dea to reduce the price so that many can benefit from t. Yaah but a lot of countries majority of people do take pigs like the case of malawi most poeple in central, northen and southern regions keeps pigs hence adoption of t due to fertilizer application cant b agreat challenge most christian countries in african. Hence project should proceed to reach majority of poor

    2. communitypower know that those that work in the maize garden they work as acontract to be given per season but those work in the pigs farm they recieve salary depending on the qualification they have

  51. This is so gorgeous my cousin
    May the good lore grant u strength to accomplish or Heartfelt desire s

  52. I strongly believe this will assist to solve some of the problems which the country is passing through like Environmental Degradation, Food insecurity and high unemployment rates. I just that the project idea gets full funding in order ensure expansion since I feel that the author is more than willing to go beyond this community to other parts of the country but that will only be possible if resources are available. I also congratulate the author since despite being a University graduate he decided to bring an innovation to help solving issues in country which is contrary to what most malawian graduates do since they join the masses in seeking employment instead of creating employment with innovations like this one. It is therefore my plea that may we the youth are the tools to bring change in our country. CONGRATULATIONS MR. CHAMUKA THEBULO AS YOU IMPLEMENT THIS WONDERFUL IDEA

    1. yes should the book of poor dad and reach dad motivated me so much since it describe how to create job and not just searching for a job.

  53. that is gud idea Mr. I like pipo wth innovative ideas who wu bring change to our nation

  54. we are truly living the era that needs creative thinking in sourcing alternative sources in improving harvests. than solely depending on inorganic fertiliser.

  55. that’s a brilliant idea that trully requires funding to exapand for a wide coverage so as many young people get assisted and the dung can be used by many famers

  56. Well done Mr Thebulo!! Time has come for us the youth to bring innovations and add value to the agricultural sector. If Kenyan youths are doing it, why can’t we do it? With this mindset and line of action in ten or so years i see a vibrant agricultural sector. As a country, i think we have talked much, its time to put ideas into action and this is the way to go more especially for us the youth. Bravoo Thebulo!!

    1. yes Letson what we need is to change our mindset of waiting someone to develop the nation that we are but ourselves are the piilar of the development more especially in agricultural sector which our economy depend on most. thanks alot

  57. thebulo, this is nice idea am imprest that you have already started employing youth. but mr thebulo i would like to how big is your land to sustain this integrated agriculture-livestock system?

    1. the most dangerous disease is swine fever which i put fence outside pen if u can observe clear u can see it behind pen wich allows only workers to enter and even workers are in work suits that they put when they are entering in pen

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