This report presents findings from a project aiming to help smallholder farmers improve cattle production in eastern Indonesia by introducing forages into their cropping systems. It identified several factors constraining livestock production in smallholder farming systems, and found that most technologies needed to address the constraints are already available in Indonesia or elsewhere, but have not yet been adopted by local farmers. The report describes the merits of combining the principles and tools of farming systems analysis and farmer participation, where an extensive benchmarking process to identify constraints to livestock production and potential strategies to address them are shared with farmers to develop a shortlist of feasible strategies for on-farm trialling. Based on feedback from farmers and results from monitoring on-farm trials the approach was deemed successful. The pathways to adoption of livestock improvement strategies varied by region and technology. The initial focus was to address forage supply and quality constraints through modest plantings of selected forages. The confidence and trust arising from successful adoption of this comparatively simple technology was used as an entry point for more complex animal management strategies requiring long-term planning and investment.
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Lisson S., MacLeod N., McDonald C., Corfield J., Wirajaswadi L., Rahman R., et al.
Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research