Box-Baling Forage Improves Profitability of Smallholder Milk Producers by dfsdf224s


									Project R6619                                                                             High Potential Production System

                                  Box-Baling Forage Improves Profitability of
                                                Smallholder Milk Producers

Using farmer-evaluated strategies,                                                                     evaluated strategies were
a practical and economical method                                                                      developed for increasing milk
for transporting animal feed                                                                           production from cows and
material was developed. Box-baling                                                                     goats through better use of
not only reduces transportation                                                                        indigenous forages.
costs but also increases on-farm
storage. This is one example of                                                                             Maize stover was identified
how to increase the profitability of                                                                        as the most important feed
smallholder milk production from                                                                            resource during the dry
cows and goats through improved                                                                             season. In Kilimanjaro,
utilisation of cultivated forages and                                                                       maize is grown 15–20 km
roadside grasses.                                                                                           from the homesteads and is
                                                                                                            stall-fed. The high cost of
Background                                                                                                  transportation from the
Milk production is progressively more                                                                       lowlands to upland small-
important on crop/livestock smallhold-                                                                      holdings, where the animals
ings in Tanzania as it increases cash                                                                       are kept, is a major con-
income to women, improves child                                                                             straint to its utilisation.
nutrition and produces manure for                                                                           Manual baling in a wooden
crops. However, profitable and sus-                                                                         box increased the weight that
                                          Manual box-baling of forage reduces transport costs. Farmers
tainable milk production is constrained   are cutting twine used to secure the bale (maize stover) which    can be carried in a pick-up
by the lack of farmer-evaluated           is compacted by trampling, then removed from the box.             truck by 63% and reduced
strategies on how to make best use of                                                                       the cost of transport by 33%
indigenous forages and on how to          utilisation of forage. With better use of              when compared with transportation of
apply new technologies, developed         forages, livestock nutrition can be                    loose stover. Stripping of leaf, sheath
from on-station research, for better      improved, particularly in the dry                      and husk from the stover together with
                                          season when feed is generally scarce.                  baling increased the pick-up load by
                                          There are a number of options for                      140%. Baling in boxes also reduced
                                          improving the use of indigenous                        on-farm storage space and thus
University of Reading
                                          forage but uptake of research findings                 facilitated budgeting of feeds. Labour
Department of Agriculture
Reading, UK                               has been hampered by the lack of                       costs and total costs of handling
E. Owen                                   information on economic viability and                  stover changed with baling. Loose
                                          by the farmers’ poor acceptability of                  material had the highest cost per kg
Selian Agricultural Research              these new technologies.                                dry matter (DM) and bales from the
Institute                                                                                        medium size box (75 x 50 x 40 cm)
Arusha, Tanzania                          Research highlights                                    recorded the lowest cost per kg DM.
N.F. Massawe                              Using Participatory Rural Appraisal
                                          (PRA) methodology with smallholder                     In case studies with six smallholder
Sokoine University of Agriculture         farmers in the regions of Kilimanjaro,                 farmers in Kilimanjaro, data were
Morogoro, Tanzania                        Mwanza and Morogoro, the project                       collected for a dairy ‘enterprise budget’
L.A. Mtenga                               identified some of the reasons for the                 – this type of budget ignores fixed
                                          low uptake and use of improved                         costs that cannot be attributed
Livestock in Development                  technologies. One of the major                         specifically to the enterprise (unlike a
Crewkerne, UK                             constraints identified regarding forage                whole farm budget), making it more
S.J. Holden, S.D. Ashley                  production and utilisation was the high                meaningful for smallholder farmers.
                                          cost of transportation. Other common                   Manual box-baling of whole stover
Natural Resources Institute
                                          constraints included inadequacies of                   increased the annual enterprise
University of Greenwich
Chatham, UK                               dissemination, farmer resources,                       budget (margin) per 400-kg cow
D.L. Romney                               marketing and roads. Based on an                       (average live weight of local cows) by
                                          analysis of resources available and                    11%. For leaf, sheath and husks of
Project completed in1999                  the technology developed, farmer-                      stover the improvement was 22%.
Uptake                                                                                                       Selected project publications
Manual box baling                                                                                            • Masswe, N.F., Owen, E., Mtenga,
technology not only                                                                                          L.A., Romney, D.L., Ashley, S.D. and
reduced transport costs                                                                                      Holden, S.J. (1997) Developing
but also reduced the                                                                                         sustainable forage utilisation to
                                                                                                             increase profitable milk production on
space required for
                                                                                                             smallholder farms in Tanzania: ap-
storage and thus                                                                                             proach using Participatory Rural
assisted in feed                                                                                             Appraisal (PRA). pp. 23–31. In:
budgeting. The storage                                                                                       Proceedings of Twenty-third Scientific
and budgeting compo-                                                                                         Conference, Tanzania Society of
nent associated with                                                                                         Animal Production, 1996. vol. 23.
manual box-baling                                                                                            Tanzania Society of Animal Produc-
could therefore contrib-                                                                                     tion, Morogoro, Tanzania.
ute towards reducing
                                                                                                             • Massawe, N.F., Owen, E., Mtenga,
the fluctuation of feed
                                                                                                             L.A., Ashley, S.D., Holden, S.J. and
offered and, hence,                                                                                          Romney, D.L. (1999) Identified
avoid poor animal                                                                                            constraints to improving forage
performance associ-                                                                                          utilisation for milk production in three
ated with feed fluctua-                                                                                      locations of Tanzania: approach
tions.                     Problem linkage diagram for smallholders in Kilimanjaro.                          towards partipatory livestock research.
                                                                                                             pp.161–162. In: BSAS/KARI
Linkages                                       between researchers, extensionists,                           Proceedings of International
The case studies in Kilimanjaro                policy makers, farmers and other                              Conference on Food, Lands and
                                                                                                             Livelihoods: Setting Research
revealed that weeds contribute                 stakeholders.
                                                                                                             Agendas for Animal Science, Kenya
significantly to the annual supply of                                                                        Agricultural Research Institute,
feed on smallholder farms. There is,           Relevance to sustainable                                      Nairobi, 27–30 January 1998. British
however, a shortage of literature on           livelihoods                                                   Society of Animal Science, Edinburgh,
the use of weeds as a potential animal         Utilisation of maize stover will be                           UK.
feed and the project identified a need         greatly enhanced by baling the
for basic information on this. In recent       material; this facilitates transport and                      • Massawe, N.F. (1999) Strategies
research in Kenya, animal perform-             reduces costs. Meanwhile, increased                           based on Participatory Rural Appraisal
ance declined as a result of fluctua-          on-farm storage space from                                    for improving the utilisation of forages
                                                                                                             to increase milk production on small-
tions in feed offered. Future investiga-       compaction of stover will liberate
                                                                                                             holder farms in Tanzania. PhD thesis,
tion into the effects of frequent              storage space for other feeds, thus                           University of Reading, UK.
fluctuations in animal feed offered            overcoming the fluctuation in animal
should complement research on the              feed supplies. Livelihoods of resource-                       • Massawe, N.F. and Owen, E.,
use of weeds in livestock feeding. The         poor farmers will improve from the                            Mtenga, L.A., Holden, S.J. and Ashley,
outputs of this research developed by          application of this cost-effective                            S.D. (2000) Cut costs of feeding
the Livestock Production Programme             appropriate technology to maximise                            stover. Leaflet. Swahili (18,000 copies)
contribute to the basket of technologi-        the use of available animal feed                              and English (2000 copies). 4 pp.
cal options which are now available for        resources for increased milk produc-                          Development Communications Ltd.,
                                                                                                             Nairobi, Kenya.
smallholder milk producers (Projects           tion. Farm and household incomes will
R6775, R6993, R7010).                          be improved with increased cash                               For further information on the Programme contact:
                                                                                                                                      The Programme Manager
                                               income to women and improved child                                              Livestock Production Programme
This study also identified the need for        nutrition.                                                                                       NR International
stronger linkages to be established                                                                                               Park House, Bradbourne Lane
                                                                                                                                     Aylesford, Kent ME20 6SN
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                                                 This Project Summary is an output from the Livestock Production Programme funded by
                                                 the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) for the benefit of
                                                 developing countries. The views expressed are not necessarily those of DFID.

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