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Friday, December 9, 2011

Pelletized feeds for goat sustenance

Turning the forage into pellets will ensure the continuous availability of feeds for goats during the lean months from mid-October to April.

Dr. Edwin Orden regional coordinator of Research and Development Program for Sustainable Goat Enterprise in Central Luzon, said that the pelletizing machine designed and fabricated by Dr. Ormando N. Espino of the Central State University (CLSU) will ensure a year round feed supply for goats.

To sustain the feed supply of goats which are abundant during the rainy season and scarce during the dry season, appropriate forage materials can be shared for a longer period through pelletizing the feeds.

The machine will help ensure the continuous availability of high-protein, low cost feeds by using the surplus of pelletized total mixed rations (TMR).

Turning the storage into pellet is through compression, extrusion, and adhesion in the pelletizing machine, after the raw materials are mixed and ground.

The machine frame has a dimension of 990 mm (L) by 980 mm (H) and a width of 450 mm. It has separate areas for work, compression, and intrusion.

The work area is where feed is received, compressed and forced into die holes. The die holes also determine the final size and characteristics of pellets. They can be replaced according to the desired thickness and hole diameter.

The compression area is simply where the feed is compressed. On the other hand, the extrusion area is where the feed begins to flow through the die.

A roller force acts to compress and extrude the material. The roller must be adjusted down to a proper contact with the die or it will not turn. The rolls must be set on a regular basis as the die wears away from the roll. Roller setting is accomplished by a pair of roller adjuster at the side of the casing.

The end product of the process is pelletized TMR, longer than one inch in length. They should be dense and durable enough to withstand mechanical handling without compromising the nutritional value of the diet.

The pelletizing machine has a production capacity of 150-200 kilogram per hour when pelletizing pure rice bran. However, when using TMR as raw material, the production rate would decrease to about 60 kg/hr. This is due to the high fiber content of TMR, which makes the pelletizing process more difficult. The machine can operate at 2-3 hours per day.

A pellet TMR is a mixture of napier, ipil-ipil, renzoni, rice bran, copra meal, molasses, dicaphos and salt, a complete nutrient feed for the goats. Hence, with pelletized TMR, goats are assured with better feed efficiency and greater starch digestibility.

Pelletized TMR has longer shelf life and less food wastes. A surplus or deficiency of feeds can be lessened with pelletized TMR. There is also less “sorting” and segregation of diet ingredients during feed handling.

It is through the production of pelletized TMR that feeding the goat with sufficient nutrition is not seasonal anymore but definitely year round that would give a sustainable goat enterprise.

The investment capital for a pelletizing machine could be relatively expensive but with the increasing demand for pellets, one can have high returns for a short period of time.

This information is taken from the paper “:Development and Evaluation of pelletized total mixed ration for goats,” one of the finalists in the annual National Symposium on Agriculture and Resources Research and Development for the best research paper category, said S&T Media Service. Ester Z. Gallardo, PSciJourn Mega Manila

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