For many small ruminant farmers, technologies that will help alleviate their plight are welcome.
In the Philippines and other South-East Asian nations, small ruminant farming is seen to help uplift many poor farmers. In making this a viable industry, various institutions have joined hands to promote management strategies to reduce morbidity and mortality in goat kids because of endoparasites.
The Australian Council for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) promoted multi-agency research and extension initiatives in sustainable endoparasite control in the region. Due to the potential of the technologies developed through ACIAR which are now being promoted in the Philippines and the need to estimate the rate of return on the investment made by the various stakeholder organizations, ACIAR, DOST-PCARRD and DA-BAR commissioned and funded an impact assessment of the these technologies. The University of the Philippines Los Baños (UPLB) led this study.
At UPLB, Dr. Nimfa D. Montes of the Department of Agribusiness Management - College of Economics and Management who headed the study, recently reported that “the application of the technology related to endoparasite control resulted in significant reduction in death of goat kids, from 70% to 5%”.
She further added, “We estimated that, even after allowing housing, labor and forage costs, the unit cost of producing goat meat fell by almost P 10.00 per kg liveweight. “The team also estimated that though the extension of the technology only focused in Regions I and VII in the country, the rate of adoption of the technology will reach 75% by 2015”, according to Dr. Montes.
Based on the project report, the package of research and extension programs delivered to the goat farmers led to some changes on how goat farming is done in the areas. Farmers have used improved goat raising practices and used upgraded goat breeds. This resulted to increased demand and supply for live goats, breeders, and quality goat meat.
According to Prof. Normito Zapata, Assistant Project Leader, “there were significant changes in how farmers look at goat raising and how they interact with people in order to learn more about these packages of technologies.”
“Small goat raisers have increased profits, and have increased their household income as a whole. They are now uplifting themselves because of the better economic and policy environment of goat farming”, he concluded.
The UPLB project, assisted by Dr. John Mullen of ACIAR and Marie Alo of DOST PCARRD, estimated that the P 270M investments brought in by ACIAR and its various partner-agencies were profitable in terms of contributing to poverty alleviation among livestock smallholders in the Philippines.For reference:
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