Spain: Use of by-product in feeding strategy




Summary of final reports:
This document described the work conducted in two dairy goats farms to assess the suitability of using silage made from tomato and olive by-products (farm 1) and citric by-products (farm 2) on the overall feeding strategy of the farm. The work was conducted during 2013. Previous results (i.e. SOLID Deliverable 3.1. Desk-top review of novel feeds for inclusion in organic and low-input dairy production) demonstrated the potential of a range of by-products and underutilized sources as animal feeds and highlighted the need for additional information concerning certain by-product feeds that should be obtained through a strong farmer and stakeholder interaction in order to guide the future research.

On the first farm a significant proportion of the forage is grown at the farm and most of the grain has to be acquired from outside. No by-products are used currently in the feeding strategy. On this farm the use of tomato and olive silages was investigated as a replacement forage source.
On the second farm the use of agro-industrial by-products is totally integrated in the feeding system. In this case citric (orange and lemon) fruits and leaves from a nearby citric cooperative are used continuously throughout the year.

The agro-industry sector in Southern Europe provides a range of valuable by-products with potential to be used as feed for small ruminants; however, the high moisture content represents the main limitation for the successful and wide use of some by-products by the feeding industry. Ensiling represents a promising option: silages made with tomato and olive by-products may replace medium quality forage (i.e. oat hay) in dairy goat farms provided that the farm is within 50 km from the site of production of the by-product.

In farms using citric by-products with an external input of concentrate, the quality of the forage has been identified as the weak point in ensuring efficient milk production over the entire lactation period.


Overview, participatory research

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