The Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic and Natural Resources Research and Development Governing Council (PCAARRD GC) approved a project that promises to decrease the fiber content of copra meal and improve its crude protein content up to 42 percent.
Titled “Protein enhancement of copra meal as feed for swine and poultry”, the three-year project will make use of the solid state fermentation technology utilizing specific fungus in a complete bioprocessing system for the bioconversion of copra meal to protein enriched copra meal (PECM).
Enriching the nutritive value of copra meal would mean the possibility of replacing about 50 percent of soybean meal used in feed ration. Ideally, the bioprocessing of copra meal into PECM will increase its inclusion in the ration of up to 20 percent or more depending on feed type. Thus, the partial replacement of soybean, being a perennially imported feed ingredient, would also mean savings in terms of foreign exchange.
Annually, the country imports almost half a billion dollars worth of soybean meal. The Philippine swine and poultry industries would require about 3.3 million tons of feed yearly and about 10─20 percent of the feed mix includes soybean meal.
The project will be implemented this year and will be led by Dr. Laura J. Pham of the National Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (BIOTECH), University of the Philippines Los Baños with Prof. Amado A. Angeles of the Animal and Dairy Sciences Cluster (ADSC) of the same university.
BIOTECH will handle the establishment of bioprocessing system and the quality analyses of PECM, while the feeding trials of PECM in swine and poultry will be done at ADSC and in selected commercial farms in Region 4.
Written by Ronilo O. de Castro, S&T Media Service
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