Farmers taught to preserve grass as feed
The Department of Agriculture is teaching farmers and extension workers how to make food for livestock despite the scarcity of fresh grasses and others plants due to the El Niño.
The Philippine News Agency reported that the DA introduced silage production technology and urea-molasses mineral block making (UMMB) to some 50 farmers and agricultural extension workers from Iloilo using available raw materials in the area.
Silage making involves preserving cut grass and other foliage in a container to prevent them from drying out.
Bureau of Animal Industry (BAI) Senior Science Research Specialist Hernando Avilla said the know-how would help farmers feed their animals nutritious plants despite droughts or dry spells.
“We should understand that through silage technology we can minimize the degradation process and conserve the greatest amount of digestible protein and energy from the grasses,” Avilla was quoted as saying.
The farmers and agricultural workers were also taught to make UMMB using rice bran, urea fertilizer, molasses, salt trace minerals and cement. The mineral block will serve as supplement for cattle, carabao, goat and sheep.
The DA also encouraged farmers to use chopped banana trunk, corn, rice hay, napier grass, sorghum, other indigenous grasses, and leguminous trees such as ipil-ipil, madre de cacao, and tricantera for their livestock during the dry season.