Nellore, Andhra Pradesh
A Rural Feed Processing Unit (RFPU) has been successfully established at Chennur, Gudur mandal, Nellore district, Andhra Pradesh by National Research Centre on Meat, Hyderabad under National Agricultural Innovation Project, ‘Value chain for clean meat production from sheep’.
RFPU was established under the objective, ‘Augmenting quality meat and byproducts production through nutritional intervention and growing ram lambs to larger weight’. Complete feed is being produced using agricultural byproducts (maize straw, groundnut haulms and black gram straw) and concentrate ingredients (maize grain, soya bean meal, rice polish etc). Ratio of byproducts to concentrate ingredients is being maintained at 50:50. Unit is producing complete feed of about 5 tons per month since April 2011 and about 400 ram lambs are being fed with complete feed in the farmer’s premises. Initial results (0 – 45 days) have shown that the ram lambs fed with complete feed recorded average daily weight gain of 124 g where as the control animals reared on grazing average daily weight gain of 49 g. Farmers were also encouraged to grow the ram lambs to larger weight (up to 25-30 Kg) instead of harvesting in underweight (20 Kg and below) stage, which is a common practice among sheep farmers. Acceptability of the feed was very good among lambs and farmers involved in the project are extremely happy due to high growth rate of lambs and saving on labour, as lambs need not be taken out for grazing.
(Source: NRC on Meat, Hyderabad)