Bush-based animal feed viable option for drought - Kashandula

09 Jul 2019 23:50pm
WINDHOEK, 09 JUL (NAMPA) -General Manager of the De-bushing Advisory Service (DAS), Progress Kashandula said the production of bush-based animal feed is a viable option for Namibian farmers, especially during the drought period.
Kashandula said this in a media statement issued on Monday.
He explained that farmers can diversify their income and sustainably contribute to tackling bush encroachment while ensuring a more productive use of their land.
“We see a big opportunity for our farming community and for land users in this value chain,” he said.
He noted that as part of its capacity development efforts, DAS has launched a capacity development project on bush control, biomass utilisation and entrepreneurship which targets officials working in the bush control and biomass utilisation sector and for unemployed, young graduates of natural resource management studies.
The initiative, he said is about to be piloted with theoretical and practical training scheduled to take place in July and August in Okahandja after which trainees will be mentored for a number of months in order to gain hands-on experience.
According to the manager, a study conducted by the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, the GIZ Bush Control and Biomass Utilisation project and the United Nations Development Plan Sustainable Management of Namibia’s Forested Land project in 2017 shows that bush-based animal feed production is a viable and promising concept.
“Results from intensive trials demonstrates that bush feed can be used not only as an emergency drought feed, but also as a supplementary feed throughout the year and in feedlots,” he further said.
Kashandula also noted that DAS conducted a series of trainings across Namibia with a focus on bush encroached regions where farmers learn about key principles of bush to animal feed production and get insights into the practical production process.
The next round of training will take place in the northern parts of the country, in Otjetjekua, Amarika Okambali this month.
The use of basic tools, which are readily available on farms, such as pangas and axes, is demonstrated during the training, he stressed, saying that it is not necessary to procure expensive machinery to produce animal feed.