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Title: Development of multi-objective ration formulation program to optimise feed millers, dairy producers and policy regulatory goals
Authors: Mutua, Stanley Mutuku
Keywords: Multi-objective ration -- Feed millers -- Dairy producers -- Policy regulatory goals
Issue Date: Mar-2016
Publisher: Egerton University
Abstract: Dairy ration formulation in Kenya is currently based on the singular objective of least cost (LCF) that only considers cost to the economic advantage of feed millers. The interest of dairy producers is milk profit above feed costs while regulatory authorities are interested in feed quality standards and environmental health. Industry stakeholder interests on feed processing and utilisation and critical feed formulation goals present challenges to sustainable dairy production. To better address the existing challenges in the feed industry with a view to offering a solution, the current study was implemented in two stages. Part I embarked on a survey to determine the relationship between dairy ration formulation and utilisation interests of feed industry actors and the critical feed formulation goals. Part II focused on the development of a multi-objective feed formulation (MOF) program that incorporated survey results to optimise the critical formulation goals step-wise, which was validated using feeding trials that compared economic, production, and environmental performance of LCF and MOF diets. Results revealed that there was a statistically significant difference in the interests on feed processing and use on: feed cost, H (3), (N = 78) = 52.24, p = 0.00; milk production, H (3), (N = 78) = 25.97, p = 0.00; feed quality, H (3), (N = 78) = 42.46, p = 0 .00 and nutrient pollution H (3), (N = 78) = 16.49, p = 0.001; between the stakeholder groups, representing an underlying conflict in dairy feed manufacturing decision-making process. The MoF program was able to integrate the four critical feed formulation goals step-wise and process a multiple objective dairy ration formula that accounts for the unit feed cost, projects daily milk profit margins, calculates feed quality levels and the potential unit and gross P-manure environmental pollution. Compared to feeding LCF diets, cows fed on MOF diets had higher (p < 0.05) milk yield (0.04 kg/cow/day) and lower manure-P excretion (1.66 vs 1.71 g/kg DM manure), but higher (p < 0.05) milk P content (0.16 vs 0.13 g/cow/day). Milk quality was higher (P < 0.01) in fat content (2.60 vs 1.50 g/kg) but lower in protein content (0.22 vs 0.24 g/cow/day) while mean body weight change were comparable (430.60 vs 425.70 kg) for both diets; demonstrating the advantages of using MOF over LCF formulated diets. Relationships between industry actor interests on critical feed formulation goals; and results from feeding validation trials are important to livestock development partners in their effort to formulate appropriate policies for practical feed manufacturing to support sustainable dairy entrepreneurship.
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Agriculture

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