Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Sustainable Small-Scale Poultry Production: Are Local Feeds a Viable Option for the Pacific Region?


Sustainable Small-Scale Poultry Production: Are Local Feeds a Viable Option for the Pacific Region?

Author: P.C. Glatz, Science Leader, Pigs and Poultry, South Australian Research and Development Institute, Roseworthy Campus, University of Adelaide, South Australia 5371, Australia
Date: 09/07/2012

Introduction:
The lack of regional small-scale feed manufacturing plants, high cost of imported feed and cheap imports are holding back the development of the smallholder poultry sector in Pacific countries. As there are adequate supplies in some regions of locally produced feed ingredients (cassava, sweet potato, coconut, maize), the prospect for alternative feedstuffs is in the semi-commercial or family poultry units. For these sectors, profitability rather than maximum production is the objective, and alternative feedstuffs can make a useful contribution in poultry feeding.

In his article, Glatz examines four feeding strategies to produce effective poultry rations that are in line with the regional availability of feed resources. With a complete ration formulation using local ingredients, egg production was significantly lower in birds fed the local mix ration compared to the commercial ration. Testing free-choice feeding, the birds showed the capacity to regulate their intake according to their physiological requirements, provided that the three food groups were readily available. Using a mix of concentrate with local ingredients, birds fed a 50/50 sweet potato / low-energy concentrate or a 50/50 cassava / high-energy concentrate diets were able to reach market weight in due time. A 70/30 sweet potato / low-energy concentrate diet was effective only in the more suitable environment of the Western Province of PNG. Diluting commercial broiler finisher with 20-40% copra meal resulted in similar growth as the 100% broiler finisher control diet (inclusion of 60% copra meal resulted in somewhat less acceptable growth). 

Poultry farming in the Pacific using local feeds can be competitive and achieve 30% feed cost savings when mini-mill equipment is readily available and small-scale regional feed manufacturing centres (producing 5-10 tonnes/week) are built where local feed supply is plentiful.



Source: Knowledge for developmenthttp://knowledge.cta.int/Dossiers/S-T-Issues/Reducing-Postharvest-Losses-A-Challenge-for-the-Scientific-Community/Feature-articles/Sustainable-Small-Scale-Poultry-Production-Are-Local-Feeds-a-Viable-Option-for-the-Pacific-Region

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