Experiences in Promoting Ensiling of Onion Crop Residue among Smallholder Dairy Farmers in Namakkal District of Tamil Nadu

M. Jothilkashmi and N.Akila


In mixed crop-livestock system country like India, frequent occurrence of drought limit animal feed resources such as green fodder and crop residues. Forage conservation technologies and Non-Conventional Feed Resources (NCFR) could mitigate dry season feed shortage but their adoption in smallholder systems has so far been low and varying across regions. In order to address and develop solution to the issues, this action research was attempted to introduce onion crop residue-based silage among small onion (Allium cepa) cultivating farmers of Namakkal district of Tamil Nadu. For the above purpose, ensiling of onion crop residue was standardized. Then attempts were made to popularise the standardized silage preparation using polypropylene bags and feeding of silage to dairy animals through farmers meetings, training, demonstration and field days. The adoption rate and perception on onion crop residue silage using bags were studied one year after intervention. This study found that 16.70 per cent had adoption of promoted technology and the remaining has not adopted. Added, majority of the farmers reported that silage making using fresh onion crop residue has less relative advantage over the existing practice, involves high complex procedures and has limited potential of experimenting in small scale. Furthermore, onion cropping area, herd size and perception(s) on the attributes of the technology differentiated adopters and non-adopters. The limited adoption of recommended technology demands bottom up / participatory approach for adoptable feed innovation.

Keyword: Adoption; Onion crop residue; Innovation; Silage; Smallholder dairy.

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