The government of the state of Odisha, in eastern India, and the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) will work together to provide improved feed and fodder to livestock in the state (formerly known as Orissa) in a new three-year project.
Inaugurating a day-long seminar on Public-Private-Producer-Partnership for small ruminant development in Odisha, Sethi said consultations with experts, policy analysts and the cross-section of stakeholders including farmers are on to finalise the Odisha Small Animal Development Policy.
Odisha (formerly known as Orissa), an economically fast-growing state in eastern India, on the Bay of Bengal, is facing an emerging fodder crisis. The people of this state depend largely on agriculture for their livelihoods, and animal husbandry is widely practiced. One pathway out of of poverty for many here is to increase the efficiency and levels of their small-scale livestock production to meet the growing demand in India for more milk and meat. But without feed to give their cattle, sheep, goats and other ruminant animals, the state’s many millions of livestock producers will be unable to improve or increase their productivity. New results of a study by the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) show that lack of adequate amounts and quality of fodder is one of the biggest constraints these farmers face. A solution, say ILRI scientists, is to make better use of the residues of rice and maize (paddy straw and maize stover) as supplementary livestock feed.