12. Economic analysis of on-farm dairy animal research and its relevance to development.
In Proc. of on-farm animal research/extension and its economic analysis; Winrock Int. Inst. for Agric. Development, Los Baños, Laguna, Philippines; 1987, pp. 45-52
An economic analysis of on-farm research trials conducted in India on crossbred cows and fodder crops on rural farms was done.
Figures indicate a wide gap between availability of and need for milk in the country.
Low production and per capita availability of milk in the country are due to poor productivity of milk animals, which can be attributed to poor genetic potential, poor nutrition, widespread disease, and lack of organized marketing and credit facilities. The average annual milk yields of Indian cattle and buffalo are only 181 kg and 438 kg, respectively.
To improve animal productivity and increase milk production, concerted research and extension are needed.
Results showed the economic viability and superiority of crossbred cows over animals kept by the rural households. Three crossbred cows kept on an acre of irrigated land generated net and family labor incomes of Rs. 1,345 and Rs. 2,772 per cow per annum, respectively. A three plot system of fodder production on small farms gave an average yield of 61,803 kg green fodder which was sufficient to feed four adult crossbred cows in one year. This indicates that three crossbred cows can be maintained profitably on one acre if intensive fodder crop rotations are followed.
Highest average yields were obtained from a multi-cut mixture of fodder crops like sweet sudan, cowpea, teosinte, sorghum and pearl millet sown in summer (5,316 kg/ha) and berseem + mustard in winter (7,835 kg/ha).
The analysis revealed that on-farm trials can help small farmers in selecting fodder crops for economical milk production.
Dairy farming that uses high-yielding animals and scientific practices has great potential to increase income and employment levels; therefore, on-farm research trials are important for disseminating new innovations and technology to the farmers.
One can conclude that the technology demonstrated through on-farm research trials was technically feasible and economically remunerative and it can uplift the poor of India.
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Review, book, UK, New Zealand, grazing management, grasslands, animal production, animal feed, low-input systems, herbage intake, grazing methods, sward monitoring, enterprise planning
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