The third phase of ‘save the buffalo calves & feedlot fattening’ programme for the year 2021-22 will soon launch by Punjab Livestock & Dairy Development Department (L&DDD). The program aimed at enhancing beef production through saving the infant calves and motivating livestock farmers for feedlot fattening. During the ongoing fiscal a subsidy of Rs450 million will be extended to livestock farmers for rearing 40,000 calves under feedlot fattening and saving another 40,000 infant calves from slaughtering. Farmers under salve the buffalo calves project will be given a subsidy of Rs6,500 each for rearing the male calf below one month age for a period of four months, after which these calves need no more milk and start grazing. While under feedlot fattening, farmers have to rear buffalo calves aged 1 to 1.5 years old for a six months period thus earning Rs 4,000 each in subsidy.
Punjab’s livestock resources hold considerable potential for increasing the production of meat. It has been estimated that about 6-7 million buffalo/cattle male calves are available for fattening in the Punjab province. But majority of these calves are sent to slaughter at 1-3 weeks of age. Some calves are raised to 60-80 kg on extremely poor and unbalanced diets. If these calves are saved and raised on balanced fattening diets based on crop residues and agro-industrial by-products to gain live-weight of 250-300 kg, it is estimated that total beef production could be doubled. Farmers would be able to register for programs after the advertisement. Any farmer who has the ability can apply for both the schemes. Besides saving the infant calves and motivating livestock farmers for feedlot fattening, the project is also aimed at improving capacity of technical staff & farmers regarding the management of beef farming system.