Livestock fact check: join the webinar on 8 June

Unearthing the data behind the most prevalent livestock facts

On June 8 at 10:00 BST join an online discussion to learn about the provenance of popular livestock facts, recognise gaps in knowledge, and get up to speed on the latest figures.

What are the links between livestock and poverty? Can eradication of a deadly livestock disease really bring billions of dollars of benefits to society? And do the majority of human diseases really originate from animals? Livestock is often at the centre of economic, social and environmental discussions, but popular facts are not always rooted in reliable data.

That’s why we’re digging into the evidence behind commonly cited livestock facts and figures to better understand their origins, calculations and context. This webinar will launch a new series of factsheets investigating the most widespread claims. What we’ve found may surprise you!

key facts themesFacts checked (so far):

  • Livestock and livelihoods: Do livestock support the livelihoods of around one billion poor people globally?
  • Livestock and economy: Does the livestock sector make up 40% of total agricultural GDP globally?
  • Livestock and human disease: Of emerged human disease epidemics, have 75% really been of animal origin? And overall, are 60% of human pathogens of animal origin?
  • Livestock disease eradication: Did global eradication of Rinderpest bring billions of dollars of benefits

We need better livestock data! During the webinar, a panel of experts will share their perspectives and ideas for the way forward.

Professor Andy Peters, Director (Supporting Evidence Based Innovations, University of Edinburgh)  Andy Peters
Gareth Salmon, Researcher (Supporting Evidence Based Innovations, University of Edinburgh)  gareth salmon
Shirley Tarawali, Assistant Director General (International Livestock Research Institute – ILRI) shirley tarawali 
Gilbert Nakweya, Journalist ( Sub-Saharan Africa) Gilbert Nakweya


Note: If you cannot attend, don’t worry. The webinar will be recorded and shared online.

Livestock Fact Check is an ongoing project which investigates and clarifies commonly cited facts about livestock. The livestock factsheets and webinar are produced by the Livestock Data for Decisions (LD4D) community of practice. LD4D aims to drive informed livestock decision-making through better use of existing data and analyses. Learn more at

LD4D is coordinated by the Supporting Evidence Based Interventions project, based at the University of Edinburgh’s Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies.

Photo credit: Z. Sewunet (ILRI)

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