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Livestock Farming

Latia Resource Center Ltd.

Pig Farming Training

By | Agribusiness Trainings, Livestock Farming, News | No Comments

 

Next Pig Farming training:

On 29th October, 2016 at Latia Resource Center Ltd. in Isinya, Kajiado County.

Click Book_Event to View the event and Add reminder.

This training targets small and medium enterprise (SME) farmers to improve overall income through higher productivity and access to reliable markets. The project has several components including:

  1. Investors seminar that exposes farmers to economics of pig farming including investment cost, production variables, marketing and value addition
  2. An in-depth short course on the technical and production issues in the pig rearing from breeding to slaughter.
  3. A package of business development training including advice on construction and installation of the farm, staff hiring and training, stocking, supply of specialized inputs, Vet services, marketing etc.

The short course covers technical and production topics as follows:-

  • Housing design & structure
  • Breeding design & plan
  • Feeding per category
  • Reporting and Diagnosis of diseases & disorders
  • Record keeping & Reporting
  • Routine farm procedures
  • Key performance indicators
  • Gross margin analysis

Networking Forum

Overall, the workshop will provide a networking platform for SME farmers and livestock specialists.  Each participant gets the opportunity to be heard by others as they share challenges, explore innovative techniques and exchange ideas on best practices.  To enrich the program, facilitators and practitioners are drawn from dealers in the Pig chain, including a veterinary doctor.

Travel, Tuition and Accommodation

Commuting Participants

Training fee is 3,000 Ksh and includes: tuition, course materials, two teas/coffee and lunches.

Accommodation

Accommodation fee is at least 1,000 Ksh for B&B. Please let us know if you’d wish to spend the night at/near Isinya. 

Payment of Fees

Cash, Bank Transfer or MPESA till number 419319 – call or text +254716431054 || send an email to [email protected]

#EmpowerAgripreneurs

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dairy farming training - Latia Resource Center Ltd.

Enroll for Dairy Farming Training at Latia

By | Agribusiness Trainings, Livestock Farming, News | No Comments

Next Dairy Farming training:

From 14th to 15th October, 2016 at Latia Resource Center Ltd. in Isinya, Kajiado County.

Click Book_Event to View the event and Add reminder.

Short course trainings target small and medium enterprise (SME) farmers to improve overall income through higher productivity and access to reliable markets.  Dairy farming Training is based on improved dairy production practices and organizing effective marketing networks that link to urban consumers.

Latia also provides vet services to monitor the health of dairy cattle and regularly trains farmers on home-based prevention and control of dairy pests and diseases.

The short course on Dairy Farming covers technical and production topics as follows:- dairy farming training - Latia Resource Center Ltd.

  • Introduction
  • Housing
  • Breeding and selection
  • Feeding and Feed planning
  • Calf, heifer and lactating cow management
  • Common disease and parasite control
  • Records keeping
  • Agribusiness opportunities in dairy
  • Waste management
  • Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

 

Networking Forum

Overall, the workshop will provide a networking platform for SME farmers and livestock specialists.  Each participant gets the opportunity to be heard by others as they share challenges, explore innovative techniques and exchange ideas on best practices.  To enrich the program, facilitators and practitioners are drawn from the dairy chain, including a veterinary doctor.

Travel, Tuition and Accommodation

Commuting Participants

Training fee is 6,000 Ksh and includes: tuition, course materials, two teas/coffee and lunches.

Accommodation

Accommodation fee is at least 1,000 Ksh for B&B. Please let us know if you’d wish to spend the night at/near Isinya.

Payment of Fees

Cash, Bank Transfer or MPESA till number 419319 – call or text +254716431054 || send an email to 

Care to Share about the Latia Dairy Farming Training

#EmpowerAgripreneurs

Latia Resource Center Ltd.

Enroll for Pig Farming Training at Latia

By | Agribusiness Trainings, Livestock Farming, News | No Comments

Next Pig Farming training:

On 24th September, 2016 at Latia Resource Center Ltd. in Isinya, Kajiado County.

Click Book_Event to View the event and Add reminder.

This training targets small and medium enterprise (SME) farmers to improve overall income through higher productivity and access to reliable markets. The project has several components including:

  1. Investors seminar that exposes farmers to economics of pig farming including investment cost, production variables, marketing and value addition
  2. An in-depth short course on the technical and production issues in the pig rearing from breeding to slaughter.
  3. A package of business development training including advice on construction and installation of the farm, staff hiring and training, stocking, supply of specialized inputs, Vet services, marketing etc.

The short course covers technical and production topics as follows:- pig farming training - Latia Resource Center Ltd.

  • Housing design & structure
  • Breeding design & plan
  • Feeding per category
  • Reporting and Diagnosis of diseases & disorders
  • Record keeping & Reporting
  • Routine farm procedures
  • Key performance indicators
  • Gross margin analysis

Networking Forum

Overall, the workshop will provide a networking platform for SME farmers and livestock specialists.  Each participant gets the opportunity to be heard by others as they share challenges, explore innovative techniques and exchange ideas on best practices.  To enrich the program, facilitators and practitioners are drawn from dealers in the Pig chain, including a veterinary doctor.

Travel, Tuition and Accommodation

Commuting Participants

Training fee is 3,000 Ksh and includes: tuition, course materials, two teas/coffee and lunches.

Accommodation

Accommodation fee is at least 1,000 Ksh for B&B. Please let us know if you’d wish to spend the night at/near Isinya. 

Payment of Fees

Cash, Bank Transfer or MPESA till number 419319 – call or text +254716431054 || send an email to

#EmpowerAgripreneurs

Care to Share about the Latia Pig Farming Training

Enroll for Poultry Farming Training at Latia

By | Livestock Farming, News | No Comments

 

Next Poultry Farming training:

On 3rd September, 2016 at Latia Resource Center Ltd. in Isinya, Kajiado County.

Click Calendar to View the event and Add reminder.

This training targets small and medium enterprise (SME) farmers to improve overall income through higher productivity and access to reliable markets.  Poultry Farming training is based on improved poultry production practices and organizing effective marketing networks that link to urban consumers.

Latia vet services are open to monitor the health of the chicken flocks and regularly visits the villages to train beneficiaries on home-based prevention and control of poultry pests and diseases.

Latia Resource Center Ltd.

 

The short course covers technical and production topics as follows:-

  • Breed selection
  • Housing structure
  • Feeding breeds
  • Incubation & Brooding
  • Disease control & vaccination
  • Bio-safety management
  • Key Performance Indicators
  • Record keeping
  • Gross margin analysis

Networking Forum

Overall, the workshop will provide a networking platform for SME farmers and livestock specialists.  Each participant gets the opportunity to be heard by others as they share challenges, explore innovative techniques and exchange ideas on best practices.  To enrich the program, facilitators and practitioners are drawn from dealers in the Poultry chain, including a veterinary doctor.

Travel, Tuition and Accommodation

Commuting Participants:

Training fee is 3,000 Ksh and includes: tuition, course materials, two teas/coffee and lunches.

Payment of Fees

Bank Transfer or MPESA till number 419319 – call or text +254716431054 || send an email to  

Care to Share about the Latia Poultry Farming Training

#EmpowerAgripreneurs

Enroll for Pig Farming Training at Latia

By | Livestock Farming, News | No Comments

 

Next Pig Farming training:

On 16th & 17th August, 2016 at Latia Resource Center Ltd. in Isinya, Kajiado County.

Click Calendar to View the event and Add reminder.

This training targets small and medium enterprise (SME) farmers to improve overall income through higher productivity and access to reliable markets. The project has several components including:

  1. Investors seminar that exposes farmers to economics of pig farming including investment cost, production variables, marketing and value addition
  2. An in-depth short course on the technical and production issues in the pig rearing from breeding to slaughter.
  3. A package of business development training including advice on construction and installation of the farm, staff hiring and training, stocking, supply of specialized inputs, Vet services, marketing etc.

Latia Resource Center Ltd.

The short course covers technical and production topics as follows:-

  • Housing design & structure
  • Breeding design & plan
  • Feeding per category
  • Reporting and Diagnosis of diseases & disorders
  • Record keeping & Reporting
  • Routine farm procedures
  • Key performance indicators
  • Gross margin analysis

 

 

 

 

Networking Forum

Overall, the workshop will provide a networking platform for SME farmers and livestock specialists.  Each participant gets the opportunity to be heard by others as they share challenges, explore innovative techniques and exchange ideas on best practices.  To enrich the program, facilitators and practitioners are drawn from dealers in the Pig chain, including a veterinary doctor.

Travel, Tuition and Accommodation

Commuting Participants:

Training fee is 3,000 Ksh and includes: tuition, course materials, two teas/coffee and lunches.

Boarding Participants:

Accommodation fee is at least 1,000 Ksh for B&B. It is paid directly to Latia Resource Center Ltd. Our staff will assist to book accommodation on request.

 Payment of Fees

Bank Transfer or MPESA till number 419319 – call or text +254716431054 || send an email to  

Care to Share about the Latia Pig Farming Training

#EmpowerAgripreneurs

Latia veterinary services for dairy farmers

Join the Campaign today to Kick out Mastitis

By | Initiatives for Capacity Development, Livestock Farming, News | No Comments

Growing up on a dairy farm, you certainly learn discipline and a commitment to purpose.                                                                                            – Mike Johanns

A Colony of Bees for Enterprise, Buzz and Thrill

By | Integrated Agricultural Systems, Livestock Farming | No Comments

Today many farmers are hanging on by a thread, food supplies are threatened, and the biodiversity of the planet itself has been endangered. Honey farmers are not an exception. Bees are small but powerful enterprising insects. Their resilience and adaptability to ecological changes makes them favorable for diverse horticultural practices.

 

An Apiary should placed in a serene environment with shade, water and indigenous plants.
An Apiary should placed in a serene environment with shade, water and indigenous plants.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

They say “deep silence is the mother of all creativity” – Sri Sri. The reason why bees thrive best in both indigenous highlands and lowlands is that they dislike disturbances. The areas are serene enough to enhance the activity of bees as they make honey and enable pollination across plants. Indigenous plants are a major source of high quality nectar and propolis. Bees are also choosy and highly attracted to sweet scent; anything chemically manufactured would destroy them. Therefore, the use of chemical pesticides by keepers and the emergence of viruses stresses the little insects to the loss of their natural habitats.

There are different ways of setting up hives in an apiary (collection and arrangement of beehives). An apiary should be under a shade with ample light. Three hives can be suspended in between two poles 2 meters apart attached 2ft down to the ground for stability. For a standard hive, one can use wood for compacting on the sides and frames for separating the internal chambers.
Common types found in Kenya are: lock hive, mudstick hive, pot hive, basket hive, langstroth and the Kenyan top bar hive (KTBH).
Latia uses the two latter. The arrangement of the apiary is both scattered (hives set apart) and cluttered (hives set together). Bees require a lot of water as they use it to make honey and wax. If there’s no water body nearby, one is required to create one depending on the number of bees available. Indigenous and crop plantation are rich in nectar and pollen, another source of honey-making for the bees.

Kenya Top Bar Hive (KTBH)
Kenya Top Bar Hive (KTBH)

Bees organize themselves as a colony. Workers are female whose main roles are feed the entire colony (making honey); maintaining security and chasing away enemies; control temperatures around the queen; cleaning and sealing leakages in the hives. Their level of work is dependent on their age. Drones are male whose main role is to fertilize the queen. Workers hatch and the entire colony appoints a queen. The queen’s main role is to lay eggs. The lifespan of a bee during dry season is merely six weeks because they work harder looking for pasture to make honey and wax, compared to wet seasons which lasts them at least six months. During dry season, workers get rid of drones because they have no work to do apart from eating. Workers remain hunting for food and preparing for the appointment of a new queen. Bee breeding is done during daylight for clarity. An apiarist ought to remove eggs after three days, those that can be hatched.

 
Harvesting honey can happen between a span of 1-3 months. A strong colony has a high number of at least 60,000 plus one (the queen) and much availability of pasture. Therefore, you can harvest about 8-30 kilos of unrefined (honey, wax, propolis) from a hive with 5-10 frames holding the combs. While a hive can hold 25 frames, other frames may be holding eggs or the bees. Apiarists further use centrifuges to extract fine honey from combs, separating the wax, propolis and other contents. Always return the empty combs in the hives for refill. Keepers can also find pollen from grid traps set at the entrance of the hive boxes.

 
Wearing protective clothing is a requirement. The bee suits include bright-coloured overall gears (cotton or nylon), veils, boots and gloves (leather or plastic). Other equipment are meant for collecting honey and handling diseases. Nevertheless, a good keeper understands his/her bees ensuring cleanliness at all times and avoiding much use of chemicals. Use the right quantity of fumigants to clean the combs. One can use shrubs, bee-wax, propolis and sugar to clean and fix the sides of the hive box. Always ensure that you maintain a short distance between the apiary, water and nearby plantation from which the bees will source ingredients to make honey. There are no major daily activities by the apiarist, just occasional inspection.

Bee suits include bright-coloured overall gears (cotton or nylon), veils, boots and gloves (leather or plastic)
Bee suits include bright-coloured overall gears (cotton or nylon) & dark veils, boots and gloves (leather or plastic)
  • Interestingly bees are:
    – Very organized and industrious.
    – Choosy; can live with other smaller insects like sugar ants since they are less threatening. Sugar ants only eat the honey.
    – Not domesticated, thus apiarists do not control the creatures, they only provide equipment to extract honey.
    – Customarily explorers who may choose to return to a hive that presents a clean, dark, sheltered domicile.
    – Highly profitable as keepers can sell pounds of honey, wax, propolis, pollen and ready eggs for hatching within a short while with ready market.
    – They Enhance cross-pollination among fruits, flowers and vegetables for horticulturalists. Moisture content found in honey is said to be the same in different regions. Nevertheless, the taste of honey varies with the kind of pasture that the little workers use.
    – A strong colony of young queenless bees can produce royal jelly. The colony is given plenty of pollen and honey stores, but it is kept both broodless and are enthused to rear queens using artificial cell bases.
  • Drones can only mate with one queen bee once in her lifetime, because the latter has the capacity to withhold sperms in her body for a long time. Queen bees can live for as long as two years before they are replaced.
  • A major challenge that bees face in apiculture (beekeeping) is the lack of understanding by most small-scale farmers of how to construct and use economical inputs in “bio-tech” beekeeping system. Mistakes range from improper fitting and spacing of frames; less brood chambers than required; inadequate use of queen excludes; and, the lack of comb base.

A series of Integrated Agricultural Systems.

For more information on Latia_Resource_Center

 

How to Make Silage for Dairy Cattle and Sheep | Nutritive Value

By | Livestock Farming | No Comments

Silage is agricultural or industrial produce preserved either naturally or artificially, using lactic or acetic acids under anaerobic (no air) conditions. It is an alternative method of making hay, to prevent wastage of excessive fresh crop residue especially during cold weather seasons when precipitation is high.

The process of making silage is termed as ‘ensiling’ through fermentation. It involves the use of fresh by-products such as fodder crops (napier grass, legumes, oat or weed); banana fruits, leaves or trunks; wet pulps from fruit and vegetables; root crops and their leaves (yam, cassava, taro, potato); and, animal waste (fish and poultry). The by-product are mixed with cereals such as maize germ, sorghum or soya and refined sugars, preferably molasses. The fresh plants contain high-levels of moisture, natural sugars (carbohydrates and cellulose) and vitamins. Animal waste contains high levels of protein with amino acids. Grain cereals and molasses contain additional carbohydrates, necessary for energy during decomposition.

No additional water and air is required as this will disrupt the fermentation process of the plant and cereal sugars by the acids.

Fermentation takes place in a silo (storage structure), that can be a trench, a bag, a dug pit or a large tower depending on the capacity of the livestock farm. This process can be used to process animal feeds or bio-fuels. In this case, we look at making animal feeds for the bud-chewing animals – dairy cattle and sheep.

Steps involved

  1. Prepare a silo in form of a trench/bale, whether plastic or wooden, 5-10ft high and variable length depending on the amount of fodder available. The trench is covered on the sides with plastic tarp/sheet/film to make it airtight. The wrapper is usually bigger in size than the trench to enable top covering. It is suggested that one uses black or green sheets because they absorb heat from the atmosphere, rather than direct ultra-violet (UV) sunlight which may interfere fermentation process.
  2. Harvest the green vegetation at optimum height during maturity stage. That is 2m to 3m high, no pricks and twigs for naturally growing leafy herbs or tree legumes. The second harvest should be within 30 days during the wet tropical seasons, when the fresh plants are about 1.5m long to prevent loss of moisture. Transport them immediately to the point of silage. Shred the plants in small pieces of about 1.5cm long. This can be done using a machine or machete. Short lengths enable easy combustion .
    Forage in a shredder

    Shredding can be done manually or using a machine

  3. Layer the cut forage on racks or against the walls, to allow the sun’s heat to evaporate some moisture from the plants. For a standard size of a silo (9m by 5m by 5m), pour in bunches of 500 kilos of the shredded forage per layer. Spread and squeeze the layer to get rid of excessive moisture.
  4. Spread a fermentation substrate as a layer in the forage, say every 10 to 15 cm. Molasses for example, ferments the silage in a better quality with sweeter smell. Do not dilute the molasses with water as the forage is already too moist. An ideal amount per layer is 3 ltrs

    Layering molasses

    Molasses (a substrate) is spread over the layer of forage

  5. Spread about 10 kilos of maize germ, rice bran or sorghum on each consequent layer of the 3ltr-molasses and 500kg-forage, then squeeze tightly to enable mixing and absorption of moisture from the forage through the molasses to the cereal. The cereals contain high level of carbohydrates that are broken down by the acids (decomposition). Cereals and molasses are additives that increase acidity level to pH 4.1.
    Cereal grains

    Cereal can be maize germ, rice/wheat bran or sorghum

  6. Once the silo is filled to a maximum amount of the available ingredients, spread the sheet thinly over the stack and wrap. Compact the silo as tightly as possible such that one cannot insert a finger or an insect cannot interfere.
  7. Fermentation begins after the first few days of respiration and some dry matter (DM) loss. DM loss should not be greater than 20%. A few weeks later, respiration stops and the pH drops, while the cellulose is broken down. When closely packed, the supply of oxygen is limited, while the oxygen (O2) present is consumed. Sugars present are converted to volatile fatty acids (VFAs) as a result of the decomposition of carbohydrates and cellulose by bacteria present in the fodder. The silage becomes sour. VFAs contain energy that the bacteria use. Water-soluble proteins (albuminoids) are converted into albino and ammonium compounds but if fermentation is poorly managed, excessive ammonia is produced. As a result, the sour silage acquires an unpleasant odour. Vitamin B12 is also produced by micro-organisms present in the chopped fodder. Infiltration process allows little oxygen and respiration through the pores. Some carbohydrates (CHOs) are lost through heat and gas. Fermentation lasts at least two weeks.
    Combating components

    Combating is necessary per layer to ensure proper mixing of the components and to get rid of excessive moisture

  8. Emptying the silage exposes it to additional loss. Safety measures are crucial when handling the product. Silage gas produced during fermentation contains nitric oxide (NO), that will react with infiltrated oxygen (O2) from the air to form nitrogen oxide (NO2), which is toxic. Liquid (silo effluent) released is corrosive. This is because the airtight process contains high nutrient that result to growth of bacteria and algae.
  9. Disposal of the plastic sheet by burning is not commendable because of high levels of carbon emits from the smoke and bad odour from the ammonium compounds. There are recycling methods. To ensure this, Silage can be fed into anaerobic digesters to produce biogas, an environmentally-friendly fuel that can generate electricity and heat.
    Nutritional value in silage

    Silage is highly nutritious, resulting to enough milk and increased value

  10. Silage can then be stored in bulk and feed cattle, sheep and horses for a lengthy time, while still:- the resource remain nutritious for milk products; continuous feeding when there’s not enough yield of fodder; constituting a variety of diets; reducing toxicity of vegetables and grass to safe levels; destroying harmful bacteria from other animal waste; maintains high quality of forage into the dry season.

The outcome is 4.5 tonnes per stack/trench/box. A cow that produces 20ltrs of milk daily consumes 20kg of silage, 16kg of dairy and some fresh lusan grass. The quantity of silage required depends on the number of animals to be fed, storage space available, dry matter content available and other operation factors such as labour and size of the farm.

For more information on Dairy production, visit our model farm at Latia Resource Center, in Isinya-Kajiado, Kenya.

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