Livestock Research for Rural Development

Volume 9 Number 1

Better Use of Locally Available Feed Resources in Sustainable Livestock-based Agriculture in SE Asia


The network, executed by FAO and financed by the Government of Japan, began operations in February 1994. It will end this year.

Two events have been held since the last news letter was published. The first was a seminar-workshop sponsored jointly by SAREC, the regional FAO project (GCP/RAS/143/JON) and IFS (International Foundation for Science) held in the University of Agriculture and Forestry, Ho Chi Minh city, Vietnam from 10 to14 September 1996. The second event was the annual regional seminar of the project held in Cambodia from 21 to 24 January 1997.

The proceedings of the seminar held in Vietnam are available on diskette and in booklet form. The contents page is presented below:


International Cooperation for Sustainable Livestock Production on Local Feed Resources; Luu Trong Hieu, University of Agriculture and Forestry, Vietnam 1

The path towards progress - appropriate technologies which are accepted by farmers; Le Viet Ly, NIAH, Vietnam 6

The role of livestock in integrated farming systems in the tropics; T R Preston, UTA, Vietnam 11

Effect of management practices on yield and quality of sugar cane and on soil fertility; Nguyen Thi Mui, , Dinh van Binh, Le Viet Ly and T R Preston, GRRC, Vietnam 17

Biomass production and feed quality of multi-purpose trees; Nguyen Phuc Tien, Dinh van Binh, Le Viet Ly, Nguyen Thi Mui and T R Preston, GRRC, Vietnam 27

Effect of planting season and type of fertilizer on biomass yield and quality of sugar cane; Nguyen Thi Mui, T R Preston, Dinh van Binh, Le Viet Ly and Ngo Tien Dzung, GRRC, Vietnam 33

Effect of shade on biomass production and composition of the forage tree Trichanthera gigantea; Nguyen Thi Hong Nhan, Nguyen Van Hon and Vo Van Son, Cantho University 39

Effect of management practices and fertilization rates with biodigester effluent on biomass yield and composition of duckweed; Nguyen Duc Anh and T R Preston, University of Agriculture and Forestry, Vietnam 44

Use of Trichantera gigantea leaf meal and fresh leaves as livestock feed; Nguyen Thi Hong Nhan, T R Preston and Frands Dolberg, Cantho University, Vietnam 50

Effect of level of local supplements for fattening muscovy ducks by poor farmers in remote villages in Mekong delta of Vietnam; Nguyen Thi Kim Dong, B Ogle and T R Preston, Cantho University 55

Effect of dietary protein level and duckweed (Lemna spp) on reproductive performance of pigs fed a diet of ensiled cassava root or cassava root meal; Le thi Men, Bui Hong Van, Mai Thi Chinh and T R Preston, Cantho University 59

Duckweed (Lemna spp) as protein supplement in an ensiled cassava root diet for fattening pigs;Bui Hong Van, Le thi Men, Vo van Son and T R Preston, Cantho University 64

Effect of housing system (cage versus underground shelter) on performance of rabbits on farms; Nguyen Quang Suc, Dinh Van Binh, Le Thi Thu Ha and T R Preston, GRRC, Vietnam 67

Chemical composition of cashew apple waste ensiled with poultry litter; La Van Kinh,T R Preston, Vu Van Do and Dang Duc Phuong, IAS, Vietnam 71

A study of feed degradability and rumen environment of swamp buffaloes; Nguyen van Thu, Cantho University 79

The nutritive value of sun-dried and ensiled cassava leaves for growing pigs; Bui Huy Nhu Phuc, R B Ogle, J E Lindberg and T R Preston, University of Agriculture and Forestry, Vietnam 83

Cottonseed meal supplementation of dairy cattle fed rice straw; M Wanapat, K Sommart and K Saardrak, Khon Kaen University, Thailand 90

Protein supplementation of traditional diets for crossbred pigs under village conditions in Central Vietnam; Nguyen Thi Loc, Brian Ogle and Thomas R Preston, Hue University, Vietnam 93

Cassava root silage for crossbred pigs under village conditions in Central Vietnam; Nguyen Thi Loc, R Brian Ogle and Thomas R Preston, Hue University, Vietnam 97

Feeding pigs by sugarcane juice and introducing biodigesters to small scale farmers in Caobang province; Mai Van Sanh, Vien Thi La, Le Viet Ly and T R Preston, NIAH and Women's Union, Cao Bang Province, Vietnam 105

Egg production and economic efficiency of Khaki Campbell ducks reared on locally available feedstuffs in the coastal land stretch of the Red River Delta; Luong Tat Nho and Hoang Van Tieu, NIAH, Vietnam 111

Bac Thai women's acceptance of the technology of pig production with sugar cane juice and agricultural by-products; Hoang Thi Tham, Hoang Thi Tao, Le Viet Ly and Bui Van Chinh, Bac Thai Women's Union, Vietnam 115

The role of the sugar palm tree (Borassus flabellifer) in livestock based farming systems in Cambodia; Khieu Borin, Than Soeurn, T R Preston and Kenji Sato, Ministry of Agriculture, Cambodia 119

Local feed resources and indigenous breeds: fundamental issues in integrated farming systems; Lylian Rodríguez and T R Preston, UTA, Vietnam 125

Evaluation of farmer knowledge and their composition on the use of non-cultivated plants for livestock feed in the Mekong delta of Vietnam; Nguyen Nhut Xuan Dung, Britta Antonsson-Ogle and P Udén, Cantho University, Vietnam 131

The introduction of low-cost polyethylene tube biodigesters on small scale farms in Vietnam; Bui Xuan An, Thomas R Preston and Frands Dolberg, University of Agriculture and Forestry, Vietnam 136

Evaluation of the seminar on "Sustainable Livestock Production on Local Feed Resources"; E R Orskov, Rowett Research Institute, Scotland, UK 145

The evaluation of the seminar as presented by Dr rskov of the Rowett Research Institute, Aberdeen, Scotland, is reproduced below:


Evaluation of the seminar on "Sustainable Livestock Production on Local Feed Resources; E R Orskov, Rowett Research Institute, Bucksburn, Aberdeen, Scotland


First of all I like to say what a pleasure it is to be here and listen to the many interesting papers you have presented and the enthusiasm with which you presented them. It is the enthusiasm and belief in what you do that must be the driving force in your research and not the possible economic rewards which may never come. I therefore expect great things from you in the future. There are so many fascinating problems here in livestock production which need to be solved.


In evaluating the contributions you have made I have attempted to make a checklist taking into account the tittle of the meeting and have tried to evaluate each point separately.

On this aspect almost all of you deserve a very high score. At so many meetings research problems are driven by western technologies and donor interest. You have not fallen into this trap which indicates a degree of self-confidence and maturity which you must continue to apply to make a contribution to relief of rural poverty in Asia in general and Vietnam in particular.

Yes most of you clearly did consider them. Livestock were not seen as specialistic but attempts were made to see livestock adapted to the available feed resources rather than changing the environment or feed resources to match the animals which has implications for unwise use of imported or so called upgraded stock.

Here there is still a weakness I believe. We must involve soil science, plant science and socio-economics even more. Sometimes the best animal product may be the positive effects on plants and soil as observed for instance when cattle graze under coconut trees where increase in coconut yield was more important than meat and milk. These effects need to be evaluated more closely. What is the effect on soil and yield of rice when fields are grazed by ducks. This should be evaluated in more detail. Animals can be used in fire-fighting, pest control, soil improvements and many other activities which need to be given a value and can turn so called low-producing into high-producing animals.

More than at any other meeting on livestock I have attended they did so. You have a very high score on this point. This is a very positive contribution which also ensures that solutions are adapted to the circumstances of the farmers. The development of different types of biogas installation is a good example of this. If you continue this way then there never will be a gap between research and practice.

Yes many, but no doubt more to come. Making silage from shrimp heads and molasses is one example of bringing wasted production into the food chain. Many new types of trees and tree leaves were evaluated and new problems identified such as why pigs love to eatleaves of Trichantera gigantea but goats do not.

Yes - in most instances, but sometimes tools were used because they were there and somebody had the skills to use them! It is very important for efficiency to use the correct tools in analysing feeds for instances. Many analyses are done which contribute little to knowledge of feed value.

Here there is room for considerable improvement but some of you did very well. In too many instances replacement of a conventional feed item with another was done at one level of replacement and conclusions made from that. This is not a valid method. In most instances it is necessary to describe response curves covering the whole or most of the spectrum even if the extreme points may not be practicable, so that the limits are understood and it also allows replacement to be manipulated according to changing economic circumstances.

Yes on this criteria you must get the maximum score. I have never attended a meeting in developed or developing countries which could beat you on that. It was excellent you made good use of new computer technologies and colours to illustrate your results and many of you showed slides of the practical problems. You provided an excellent model of what efficient paper presentations should be like.


I will attempt to make a few suggestions of potential improvements even though I feel you are doing well.

It is clear that we need to involve experts of interacting disciplines. We need them and they need us. Farmers need holistic advice. Intervention in livestock technologies can positively or negatively affect plants, soil and disease aspects. We need more positive interactions in our system-based approach.

There is a huge potential for further increase in resource use and efficiency. More emphasis needs to be given to methods of using poultry and pig manure as feed resources for ruminant and there is a need to look into resource budgeting in feed efficiency studies, so that there is no waste only resources. Excreta are considered as resources for varying uses, feeds, fertiliser, substrate for biogas, fertilising fish ponds etc.

A great deal of work has shown that the feed value of crop residues (eg: rice straw) can be improved by breeding without affecting yield of the primary product.There is a great need to involve plant breeders since crop residues are such an important source of feed for livestock in most of Asia. Nutritionists can help in providing tools for measurement of nutritive value at an early stage in the selection process.

There is much to be gained by appropriate methods of feed preservation and using harvesting methods which ensure that crop residues can be preserved to maintain the highest nutritive value. New upgrading methods need to be found which can increase feed value without incurring high losses in organic matter.

As mentioned before, many designs can be improved so that the maximum information can be extracted from the data without more cost of the trials. It is particularly important to describe response curves with 3 to 4 levels of inclusion etc. so that the problems and its limits can be understood.

Feed evaluation using western standards is often not very helpful and a new approach is needed which not only expresses the energy value but the amount the animals will consume so that farmer and planners of livestock production can have helpful data which can provide real exchange rates of feeds for farmers and provide livestock planners with values which help them to assess the most appropriate livestock production to promote in different areas depending on the feed potential.


I must finally say to those who have been responsible for sponsored this meeting such as SAREC, FAO and IFS and MARD and MET from Vietnam that they have every reason to be proud of the work presented. This I believe has been good return on investment. What is more important however is the contribution you have made to human resource development as many of those whom you have supported will become future leaders in agricultural development.

You have fostered an attitude to research and development in which livestock are seen in their holistic interaction with plants and soil integrated into the environmental and socio-economic circumstances of the different regions. This must be the model for the 21st century.

Regional GCP/RAS/143/JPN seminar in Phnom Penh, Cambodia (21-23 January 1997)

This took place in Phnom Penh, Cambodia from 22 to 24 January 1997. The meeting was hosted by the Department of Animal Health and Production of the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries.

Pilot projects were visited the most important of which were:

An innovatory feature was the presentation of short communications by students from the University of Tropical Agriculture (UTA), participating in the Master of Science course in Sustainable Use of Natural Renewable Resources. The proceedings of the meeting have been edited and are available on diskette and also in book form. The contents page is summarized below:

Feed resources in sustainable livestocked-based agriculture in SE Asia (Phnom Penh, Cambodia from 22 to 24 January 1997)


The estimation of Brix, water extract and in vitro gas production in leaves from tropical trees and shrubs; Le Diep Long Bien, UTA, Vietnam 1

Impact study of livestock-based interventions in villages in Bavi district in North Vietnam; Dinh Van Binh and Nguyen Thi Mui, GRRC, Vietnam 5

Evaluation of protein quality in duckweed (Lemna spp.) using a duckling growth assay; Nguyen Duc Anh, UTA, Vietnam 12

Promotion and utilization of polyethylene biodigester in smallholder farming systems in the Philippines; F A Moog, H F Avilla, E V Agpaoa, F G Valenzuela and F C Concepcion, BAI, Philippines 17

Effect of inclination and recycling the effluent on gas production of plastic biodigesters; Pham Thi Thanh Binh, UTA, Vietnam 22

Cassava hay: A new strategic feed for ruminants during the dry season; M Wanapat, O Pimpa, A Petlum and U Boontao, Khon Kaen University, Thailand 26

Effect of level of application of biodigester effluent on growth of bananas and soil fertility; Le ha Chau, UTA, Vietnam 30

Heat treated whole soya bean andsugar cane juice/muscovado sugar as feed for growing-finishing pigs; F G Valenzuela, A M Samiano, S G Raymundo, E V Agpaoa and R S Rosales, BAI, Vietnam 34

Ground shelters or raised cages for rabbits with basal diet of fresh leaves of Trichantera gigantea and sugar cane stalk with or without supplement of rice bran; Le Thi Thu Ha, UTA, Vietnam 40

Storage and use of groundnut vines as animal feed; Bui Van Chinh, Le Viet Ly and Nguyen Huu Tao, NIAH, Vietnam 44

The potential of cassava leaves as protein supplement for pigs; Nguyen Van Lai and Du Thanh Hang, UTA, Vietnam 48

Pig raising with molasses versus concentrate; Bounthong Bouahom, and Phaivan Vilideth, Ministry of Agriculture, Laos 52

Nitrogen digestion and metabolism in Mong Cai pigs fed sugar cane juice and different foliages as sources of protein; Du thanh Hang and Nguyen van Lai, UTA, Vietnam 54

Impact of mineral block on the performance and reproductive quality of the cattle in Xieng Khouang province; Novaha Soulivanh, Ministry of Agriculture, Laos 58

Effect of sugar cane juice on milk production of goats fed a basal diet of jackfruit (Artocarpus Heterophyllus) leaves; Nguyen Thi Hong Nhan, UTA, Vietnam 62

Preliminary result from use of Cow pea (Vigna Unguiculata Unguic. L) as protein source for growing-fattening pigs fed sugar palm juice; Borin Khieu, Sem Chou and T R Preston, Ministry of Agriculture, Cambodia 66

Effect of breed (local versus exotic hybrids) on selection of dietary ingredients in a scavenging system for growing hens; Hong Samnang, UTA, Cambodia 73

The effects of pig manure and biodigester effluent on fish growth in ponds; Hong Samnang, UTA, Cambodia 77

Jackfruit and Gliricidia sepium leaves as sole feeds on intake, growth and rumen environment in growing goats; Tran Quoc Viet, UTA, Vietnam 82

Results of a participatory rural appraisal survey and on-farm evaluation of using ensiled cassava roots; Nguyen Thi Loc, Le van An and Le Duc Ngoan, Hue University, Vietnam 85

Editors: Thomas R Preston and Kenji Sato