KalingaTV News Network
Nabarangpur: In a first of its kind, a corn silage plant has been set-up in Nabarangpur district headquarter here today. District Collector Ajeet Mishra inaugurated the unit in the presence of district agricultural officials and hundreds of farmers.
A group of dairy farmers in the state are set revolutionize the state’s dairy industry with corn silage touted as the magic fodder for cows.
Corn silage is a high-quality forage crop which is used in many dairy farms across the world. It’s popular due to its high yield of a very digestible, high-energy crop. It serves as an important forage in farms experiencing problems in making or buying high quality crop forage.
The idea first came to Anant Basudev, a 31-year old banker turned entrepreneur when he started his model dairy farm in Koraput in 2012.
“Initially we began with 20 cows but when we expanded the project to 100 cows; it was very difficult to get green fodder. While trying to cultivate alternatives for over three years, we faced a lot of challenges. During the process we realized that bigger commercial farms across the world use corn silage as fodder,” said Anant.
“Odisha has a cattle population of 15 million with fodder deficit of 48 percent. Under such circumstances, we are in need of solutions that are sustainable and cost-efficient at the same time,” added Anant.
The unit has the capacity to produce around 40,000 metric tons of corn silage annually that can feed 20,000 cows daily for a year.
“We are procuring the corn from the local farmers who have been producing corn since the last three decades but due to lack of proper marketing and decreasing price of maize most of them are in distress. This has led to huge migration of the farmers for alternate livelihood options,” said Deepak Mohanty, who quit his academic career to work in the project.
Sources said that around 500 maize farmers will be benefited in the process and will also give them around 30 percent more profit.
The equipments required for production like harvester and baler have been procured from the European countries like Germany and Belgium. Initially, the product will be available across the state but they gradually aim to reach out to farmers across the Eastern part of the country.