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This research was conducted on the introduction to animal production. The study took into account the peri-urban dairy production system from Urban and the mixed crop-animal production system from Rural. Domeabra, Aprade, and Abuakwa were urban peri-urban research sites, whereas Amansie West District was rural.

To gain an overall image of the study sites, a reconnaissance survey was conducted. To select target farms, purposeful sampling was used. To collect data, a structured questionnaire, concentrated group talks, secondary data sources, and field observations were used.

The study included 60 farmers from the urban system (Domeabra=20, Aprade=20, and Abuakwa=20). The farms were further classified as having small or medium herd sizes. Similarly, 60 cattle proprietors were chosen from the Amansie West District area.

Samples of main feed supplies from both systems were gathered and their chemical makeup was assessed. The SAS software’s descriptive statistics and General Linear Model were used to assess the data.

According to the study’s findings, natural pastures and crop residues were the primary basal diets in the rural system, while grass hay was the primary basal diet in the urban system.

In Aprade and Abuakwa, 75% of small and medium herd size dairy farms have feed challenges due to the present growing cost of supplies.

More than 80 and 55% of dairy producers in Aprade and Abuakwa, respectively, said that commercial feeds are insufficiently available in the market. A laboratory investigation of major feed supplies revealed that hay had a CP content of 6.1% and grazing pasture had a CP content of 7.2%.

Crop residue CP content ranged from 3.1 to 6.7%, falling short of the minimal need of 7.0% for optimal microbial function. Furthermore, crop residues exhibited reduced digestibility (47%) and energy values ranging from 6.5-7.9 MJ/kg DM, with NDF levels exceeding 65%.

According to an analysis of market prices for feeds and milk in the urban research sites, noug seedcake had the highest price, ranging from ETB 2.13 to 2.41 per kg feed. The price of brewery wet grain in Abuakwa was the lowest (ETB 0.18 per kg feed).

The lowest price per unit of metabolizable energy (ME) was for brewery wet grain (ETB 0.02), while the highest was for noug seedcake (ETB 0.23).

In all study locations, the price of locally produced items such as butter and cheese was highest during the dry season. As a result of the current investigation,

it was determined that the quality of available basal roughage feeds is often inadequate, and that strategic supplementation of protein and energy rich feeds is required.

Alternative dry season feed production and supply methods should be implemented with the participation of all stakeholders and development actors.

In light of the escalating market price of concentrate feeds, various optional feeds such as brewery wet grains and non-traditional feed supplies should be considered.




Ghana is thought to have one of the most diverse animal populations in Africa. Ghana has 49.3 million cattle, 25.0 million sheep, 21.9 million goats, 1.8 million horses, 5.4 million donkeys, 335 thousand mules, 760 thousand camels, and 38.1 million poultry,

according to the most recent animal population census (CSA, 2008). This excludes the animal population of three Afar zones and six Somali zones.

Several academics have characterised Ghana’s animal production systems in various ways. The majority of classifications are based on factors such as livestock integration with crop production, level of input and intensity of production, agro-ecology, and market orientation.

As a result, five distinct production systems have been identified: pastoral, agro-pastoral, mixed crop-livestock farming, intensive dairying, and peri-urban dairying (MoA, 1997; Yoseph, 1999; Mohammed et al., 2004; Yitay, 2007). Across all production systems, the production of milk and milk products is critical, with cattle contributing 99% of total milk output.

Ghana has significant dairy growth potential, owing to its huge animal population, favourable climate for enhanced high-yielding animal breeds, and largely disease-free environment (Winrock International, 1992; Halloway et al., 2000).

Furthermore, the country has varying geographical and climatic circumstances, therefore milk production occurs at various levels throughout all agro-ecological zones.

Milk is primarily produced on a small scale by mixed farmers in cities, although pastoralist production systems predominate in the lowlands.

The country also has intensive and commercial dairy farms. The vast majority of cows retained are indigenous breeds, with only a few farms keeping crossbred grade dairy animals (Gebre-Wold et al., 2000).

Despite the fact that the country has a vast number of cattle resources, their output is exceedingly low. In Ghana, the animal sector provides 12 and 33% of total and agricultural GDP, respectively (Ayele et al., 2003).

Milk consumption per capita is predicted to be 19.2 kg/person/year, which is quite low when compared to Africa’s average per capita consumption of 37.2 kg/person/year (FAO, 1998; FAO, 2000).

However, rising demand for dairy products in the country is likely to fuel rapid expansion in the dairy sector. Rapid population growth (estimated at 3% per year), growing urbanisation, and predicted income rise are all factors contributing to this need (Mohammed et al., 2004).

The move in national policy towards a more market-oriented economy will make it easier for private companies to respond to growing demand by investing more in dairy production and milk processing.

While the private sector is projected to respond significantly to growing demand for dairy, small-scale farms in the cities contain the majority of the potential for dairy expansion.

A growing number of smallholder and commercial dairy farms are springing up in Ashanti’s urban and peri-urban areas (Felleke and Geda, 2001; Azage, 2003) as well as most regional towns and districts (Ike, 2002; Nigussie, 2006). According to Azage and Alemu (1998), there were 5167 dairy farms in the Ashanti milk shade producing milk annually.

Annual milk output per cow in Ghana is often low due to shorter lactation periods, longer calving intervals, older age at first calving, and inferior genetic makeup.

One of the key issues contributing to such poor milk production is a lack of livestock supplies, both in quantity and quality, particularly during the dry season.

Furthermore, encroachment of cropping land onto former grazing areas and onto less fertile and more easily erodible lands, as well as expansion of degraded lands that can no longer support either annual crops or pastures, all contributed to a feed resource shortage (Anderson, 1987; Alemayehu, 2005).

In addition, inadequate grazing management (e.g., continual overgrazing) contributed to a lack of feed resources by replacing productive and nutritious flora with unappealing species (Ahmed, 2006).

The supply of animal feed from natural pasture varies according to the seasonal dynamics of rainfall (Alemayehu, 1998; Solomon et al., 2008a).

Furthermore, the quality of native pasture is relatively low, especially during the dry season, due to their low digestible calorie and protein content and high fibre content.

This is especially true for crop residues, which have lower levels of key elements (protein, energy, minerals, and vitamins), as well as reduced digestibilities and intake (Seyoum and Zinash, 1988; Chenost and Sansoucy, 1991; Zinash et al., 1995).

Regardless of these issues, ruminants will continue to rely predominantly on forages from natural pastures and crop leftovers.

Peri-urban dairy production methods, which rely primarily on purchased fodder, have evolved around cities and towns. The word peri-urban refers to the connection and interaction between rural and urban areas, and it is defined by the production, processing, and marketing of milk and milk products to urban consumers (Rey et al., 1993, as cited in Yoseph, 1999).

Fonteh et al. (2005) classified peri-urban as a place on the outskirts of town (between 5 and 10 km distant from town). Further commercialization of dairy production occurs in cities and towns with considerable demand for milk and milk products (middle and large towns).

However, the production system has been hampered by a number of variables, the most important of which is adequate year-round animal feed supplies (amount and quality).

Few studies have been conducted on feed availability in relation to dairy animals in urban and peri-urban dairy farms (Yoseph et al., 2003a).

Under the current conditions, peri-urban areas lack current and up-to-date baseline information on feed availability and quality.

As a result, there is a need to evaluate the feed demand and supply situation in peri-urban areas in order to establish appropriate solutions for providing sufficient amounts and quality fodder to dairy animals.

On the other hand, the livestock sector in the Rural (CRV) around Amansie West District was previously dominated by agro-pastoralists, who were permanently settled via the efforts of the government and non-governmental organisations.

Currently, many of the smallholders in the CRV who use irrigation for crop production are mixed crop-livestock farmers. However, the impact of such a programme on animal output in terms of animal feed availability is unknown. Nonetheless, such smallholders preserve animals for draught power, transportation, savings, and milk (Alemayehu, 1985; Legesse et al., 1987).

Furthermore, the quantity of animals determines the owner’s socio-cultural position (Amsalu, 2000). The CRV’s enormous animal population has resulted in widespread overgrazing and land degradation, as demonstrated by a surge in invasive weeds.

However, recent baseline data on feed availability is also missing in the Rural. Recently, the government and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) have promoted dairy development in order to enhance national milk production and improve incomes in crop-livestock mixed agricultural systems.

This development will help meet societal needs but also increasing competition for enough and high-quality animal feed, particularly roughage.

Feed availability and quality, particularly during the dry season, is a significant constraint in animal production endeavours, and it influences the physical performance of the livestock sector to a substantial extent.

In general, the chronic scarcity of fodder in most animal-producing locations (both dairy and meat) has a detrimental impact on the development potential of animal production.


Animal farming is critical to Ghana’s economy. As a result of population increase and land use intensification, significant changes in livestock numbers and the mix of livestock holdings, as well as management practises, have occurred in recent years.

Animal production systems face many social, economic, environmental, and political constraints, which are represented in livestock productivity, natural and social dangers of agro-pastoral systems, and natural resource degradation.

One of Ghana’s agrarian policy problems is the lack of or weak legal and regulatory framework for agriculture. Current policies are based on previous planned economy policy reforms that are incompatible with a market-driven economy.

These laws primarily targeted state-owned farms, collective farms, and cooperatives, as well as the development of the cattle industry in populous areas rather than isolated, marginalised, and small-scale extensive production systems.

Due to a lack of mechanisms for implementation, the established laws and other legislations concerning cattle breeding, pasture utilisation, and other topics practically do not work. People from all backgrounds become farmers during the Land Reform in the 1990s.

Most of them (for example, former professors, doctors, engineers, and others) were unfamiliar with the foundations of agricultural production.

Similarly, even experienced farmers and livestock raisers are confronted with new production conditions, such as a shift in production scale, industrial relations, economic arrangements, and so on.

One of the limitations in agrarian policy is the sector’s lack of institutional development in terms of marginalised vast animal production systems.

The lack of training or inadequate training, as well as a lack of information services for farmers in distant locations, creates numerous challenges in the production-marketing process.

During the last 20 years of independence, indigenous knowledge about animal husbandry and traditional pasture management has faced serious challenges in terms of animal health control,

selecting market-oriented and appropriate livestock species, feed shortages during the winter, and unpredictable natural hazards in grazing land during other seasons.

Limited money and high feed production costs create difficulties, and the nutrition value of winter feed is particularly low. Inadequate livestock feed and a lack of veterinary services exacerbated illnesses and parasites that harmed cattle productivity. Increased livestock products are the result of increased animal populations.

At the same time, a lack of forage put strain on pastures. Overgrazing has already occurred in large areas of pasture (near-village pastures). There is a significant loss in pasture productivity and an imbalanced pasture composition due to various types of deterioration.

Pasture conservation and rehabilitation have mostly gone unnoticed. There is a fundamental imbalance in pasture utilisation; isolated pastures that are difficult for the majority of farmers to access are underutilised.

In other words, pasture degradation affects biotic and abiotic elements such as temperature increase and decrease in precipitation, high evaporation rate, and wind erosion.

Animal production system constraints are interrelated. One’s stability or accessibility allows others to develop, whereas degeneration or changes make others vulnerable.

They cannot be solved in isolation, independently, or by focusing only on one issue through initiatives or governmental interventions. Because the components are interrelated, ignoring one causes another.


As a result, the following objectives were set for this study:

To obtain insight into the temporal and spatial availability of feed, as well as its quality, in order to target interventions in feed production and management in relation to animal production in two Ashanti Ghana production systems.
To look at the primary obstacles to animal feed availability in the chosen areas.

To evaluate the performance of livestock in the designated areas

To create consulting techniques for improving animal production.


What are the temporal and spatial availability of feed, as well as its quality, in order to target interventions in feed production and management in relation to animal production in two Ashanti Ghana production systems?

What are the key supply restrictions for animal feed in the specified areas?

How are cattle performing in the chosen areas?

What are the strategies for increasing animal production?


Because the qualities of pastoral systems here suit the special characteristics of these mountainous places, animal production systems have played a major role in the economics of high altitude areas.

During the Soviet period, ecologically or biophysically driven animal production systems in Ghana declined due to shifting, socioeconomically and politically determined circumstances. Specialised livestock industry-collective arrangements influenced the preservation of rich nomadic traditional knowledge.

Other significant changes included a move from native breeds to high-demand types and the use of imported livestock feed from other Soviet countries. The fall of the Soviet Union provided certain opportunities for farmers while also introducing new limits.

The comeback of nomadic pastoral systems with a combination of modern market-oriented production methods, known as agro-pastoral systems, was aided by increased herd size and unfettered access to grazing resources.

The cattle population is increasing significantly at the district, regional, and national levels. The purpose of this study was to determine the process that led to the adoption of livestock species and herd composition at the household level,

to investigate the links between livestock management, cropland, and pastures, and to highlight the important constraints and methods for the management of agro-pastoral systems in Ghana.

The quality of the stock and its management are two major variables that lead to improved results in livestock production. Dependence on livestock rearing and herd size are determined by farm location and the availability of irrigated farmland regions.

Livestock is an important component of farming systems when crop production is feasible. Where climate and topography make crop production particularly challenging, cattle may often live and thrive on available resources and provide a means of subsistence.

A study of the interrelationships between crops and animals, as well as the income obtained from them, would aid in understanding the socioeconomic background of agro-pastoral systems in a market-based economy.

Easy availability to seasonal pastures with high nutritive and value feed plants boosts animal population, while the market boosts a specific composition of them. Pasture productivity varies according on geographical zone and climate conditions.

It is also dynamic, pastoralist knowledge in grazing management that is needed to conserve pasture biodiversity. greatest pastoralists’ greatest valuable asset is their extensive knowledge of complicated ecosystem dynamics, which makes them often the finest detectors of environmental change.

Within this setting, it is evident that even little or severe changes in climatic patterns will have a considerable impact on many pastoralists, as they enhance resource unpredictability while also changing its overall availability (Nori, 2007).

Nomadic peoples’ traditional indigenous knowledge on seasonal pastures, grazing times, and the composition and amount of grasses is a significant source of Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK).

Researchers and academicians will benefit from the findings of observations and measurements on pasture quality in terms of composition, species balance, and climate parameters.

Few research have been conducted on agro-pastoral production systems in South-Western Ghana. More research is needed to determine whether the concerns are shared by smallholders throughout the region and in other parts of Ghana.

specific aspects of animal husbandry on small holdings could be enhanced further by more in-depth research, which would be critical in determining the feasibility of specific education and cooperative programmes for livestock’s contribution to rural livelihoods.

This study attempted to identify common and particular gaps and priorities among production systems throughout the region and in other regions of Ghana.

It can also serve as a guideline for policymakers and researchers looking to enhance specific aspects of animal husbandry smallholdings.


This research is being conducted on the introduction to animal production. The study concentrated on animal production in Ghana, employing selected regions in both rural and urban Ashanti, Ghana.

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