In husbandry business, feed is the dominant factor affecting the efficiency and success. The feed becomes determining factor of quality of farm products, livestock productivity and profitability of livestock entrepreneurs. Therefore, livestock development programs, including beef self-sufficiency in 2014 will not be achieved if not getting enough support for the fulfillment of both feed quantity and quality.
That was delivered by Prof. Dr. Ir. Ali Agus, DAA, DEA at Senate Hall on Wednesday (16/3) when inaugurated as Professor of Faculty of Animal Sciences of Universitas Gadjah Mada. Giving a speech Independence and Feed Security, Future Challenges of Livestock Development, Ali Agus revealed development of ruminant cattle (cows, buffalo, goat, sheep) is currently facing problems of fluctuating forage feed availability. Similarly, poultry also depends on imported raw feed material.
"The unavailability of domestic production causes more shortage in forage supply due to narrower pasture, even the loss of pasture," said the member of Food Commission, Ministry of Agriculture.
Due to more prospective economic interests, in the end the main source of ruminant feed only relies on agricultural waste (rice straw, corn stem, sprouts, sugar cane and others). Nutritional quality of agricultural waste is certainly lower, characterized by low level of digestion, crude protein content and non-structural carbohydrate level, and high level of lignocellulosic main fibers.
"For instance when dry season comes, hundreds of trucks carry hays to Gunungkidul district to meet the needs of cattle feed, although to buy the hay, livestock owners have to sell their calf or goat," said Ali Agus.
However as an agricultural country, according to Ali Agus, Indonesia has great potential of local feed raw materials. Besides corn, there are five types of feed raw material sources which can be depended upon in the future. The five sources that can be developed include nuts, fish, palm oil, cassava and sago. "The five sources of feed material are very potential in terms of land area, number of production and development opportunity," said former Director of SMEDC UGM 2001-2006.