KALRO developed probiotic

KALRO developed probiotic increases milk, meat production

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The probiotics also helps in mitigating emission of methane gas in dairy cattle

By Jackson Okata

An im­proved pro­bi­otic developed by the Kenya Ag­ri­cul­tural and Live­stock Re­search Or­gan­iz­a­tion (KALRO) is helping enhance livestock production in the country.

The KALRO Pro­bi­ot­ics (KALPRO) in­creases live­stock pro­duc­tion by up to 30 per cent, im­proves an­imal health, and re­duces an­ti­bi­ot­ics re­li­ance.

According to KALRO researcher Willis Adero, the new Probiotics also helps in mitigating emis­sion of meth­ane gas in dairy cattle.

“In pre­lim­in­ary KALRO tri­als in Na­ivasha we have ob­served a 20-33 per cent milk in­crease in cattle where KALPRO was in­tro­duced to their diets de­pend­ing on the cow’s breed”.

“Com­mer­cial beef pro­du­cers in Ol­jororok and pig farm­ers in Kikuyu ob­served a sim­ilar per­cent­age in­crease in weight with swine at­tain­ing weight in 75 per cent of the re­quired time,” said Adero who is the pro­ject’s prin­cipal in­vest­ig­ator.

Pro­bi­ot­ics are made of be­ne­fi­cial live bac­teria or yeasts that nat­ur­ally live in bod­ies.

Adero adds that using pro­bi­ot­ics enhances growth, re­duc­es mor­tal­ity, and im­proves feed con­ver­sion ef­fi­ciency.

KALPRO im­proves an­imal pro­duc­tion by en­han­cing the break­down of vit­am­ins, min­er­als, and am­mino acids and their ab­sorp­tion through in­test­inal walls.

Adero explains that KALPRO probiotics also re­duces over­re­li­ance on an­ti­bi­ot­ics which he says is the biggest chal­lenge for both food sys­tems and pub­lic health.

“Pro­bi­ot­ics boost the im­mune sys­tem en­abling an­im­als bet­ter coun­ter­act dis­eases and pests,” he said.

KALRO says that the li­quid pro­bi­otic is ad­min­istered or­ally through drench­ing, drink­ing water, or feed.

Farm­ers are advised to add KALPRO to water as it is the most ef­fi­cient and ef­fect­ive method of ad­min­is­tra­tion.

KALRO re­search as­sist­ant Ian Alusa says 30 mil­li­liters of the sup­ple­ment should be given weekly per an­imal.

“Dairy cows and bulls ought to con­sume 15ml twice a week; heifers, hogs, and swine should be given 10ml and pig­lets 5ml,” Alusa said.

Alusa added that farmers should use KALPRO consistently to realize its promised benefits.

“Given that pro­bi­ot­ics are nat­ur­ally oc­cur­ring, over­feed­ing has no neg­at­ive con­sequences and can also be fed at any stage of the an­imal’s life,” Alusa explained.

KALPRO re­duces meth­ane gas emis­sions by about 25-30 per cent per in­di­vidual cattle by break­ing down the harm­ful gas into water and car­bon di­ox­ide (CO2).

“Al­though, we have not yet pub­lished a full re­port on the im­pact of KALPRO on live­stock, the pre­lim­in­ary find­ings have been pos­it­ive, a sen­ti­ment shared by the farm­ers we are work­ing with across Kenya,” said Adero.

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