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Kicukiro: Livestock farmers urged to embrace ‘science’ for better milk yielding cows

Livestock farmers in Kicukiro district and other parts of the country have been urged to go scientific and use supplementary feeds like porrets/calf pencil for their animals specifically calves if they want to produce better milk yielding cows.

In an interview with journalists who visited his porrets feeds making factory in Kabeza-Kicukiro district, Justus Sunday an Agricultural engineer and animal nutritionist as well the director of ‘Jumol Agro-Tech services ltd-Masaka encouraged farmers to embrace science since they are living in a scientific world.

People need to know that learning and science has much to do with poverty alleviation, feeding animals with pasture alone is not enough to help them produce milk that can both be sold and consumed“, he said.

“Science is by formula and not by gamble, it has to be formula applied and known for it to give you what you are looking for“, he added.

Sunday together with other researchers developed the idea of making calf feed after discovering that poor feeding is the cause of poor milk production in cows.

In African setting, eating one type food is not considered eating, if a child is fed on one type of food, they are mal-nutritioned, so are calves on pastures entirely resulting to an under developed mammary system“, Sunday notes.

He adds that the research was hinged on challenges farmers face, we noticed that some have the best breeds of cattle (Fresian and Jersey) compared to Kenya and South Africa and yet still get less milk.

The formula of feeding calves with perrets should begin in the first ten days after the calf is born up to three months as that’s when the the mammary system is fully developed.

Porrets are made by mixing pasture with legumes, drying it fully in a drier covered with visquine sun selectors and then put in a hummer miller to come up with a powder mixture. Energy giving foods like; maize grains, soya, salt, avocado and potato vines extract plus cassava oils are added in the second mixing, Sunday explained.

He said porrets are good for rabbits and with time, chicken and other domestic birds will be included on the list.

A kilo of porrets goes for 3,000Frw at factory price and according to Sunday, a cow can’t eat a kilo in four days because of the calorific value in it which is equivalent to a basin of pasture.

All research and essentials for the product was done in collaboration with Mount Kenya University were raw materials were tested to come up with the correct formula that meets the interest of farmers.

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