Popularisation of farm-made aqua feed
The concept of farm-made aqua feed gains importance when farmers and entrepreneurs look forward for cost reduction technologies in order to sustain profi table aqua farming in the long run as they are encountering number of problems like ever-escalating input costs and wide fl uctuations in the farm gate price for shrimp. CIBA has been able to downscale the individual components of a feed mill to prepare feed of very small quantity as per demand. This scaled down version of a feed mill costs only about four lakhs with a capacity to produce 200 kg/ day. To popularize farm-made aqua feeds and motivate potential entrepreneurs to establish small feed mills of need based capacity, a two day workshop ‘Awareness cum practical experience workshop on farm made aqua feeds’ was conducted on 29th and 30th September 2009. A total of 35 participants including 25 farmers actively took park in the deliberations and demonstration of the techniques involved in farm made aqua feed preparation.
Apart from giving lectures on the farm-made feeds, the participants were taken to the feed mill of the Muttukadu Experimental Station of CIBA where various steps involved in practical feed preparation, handling of machineries (such as hammer mill, pulveriser, sieve assembly, mixer, wet extruder and dryer) were demonstrated. The major ingredients used in farm made feed and commercial feeds were also displayed and their characteristics were explained to the farmers. A fi eld trip was arranged to Thonirevu village, Pulicat in Tiruvallur district of Tamil Nadu which is about 70 km away from CIBA headquarters. A model farm made aqua feed mill had been established in this village under the assistance of Department of Bio-technology, Government of India. The participants actively took part in all the processing stages of farm made feed preparation.