In 2018 a new project has started for a period of 2 years in Algeria. An assignment of the ministry of economic affairs in The Netherlands, in close cooperation with the agricultural attaché in Algeria, where expertise is delivered to the dairy sector in Guelma, a region in north-east Algeria. Objective in this project is the development of the curriculum for local farmers in this region, together with ITMAS, a regional agricultural institute. In order to improve the national milk production and to improve the income of the dairy farmers, they need to develop their knowledge and improve their technical skills. Topics of the curriculum are a.o. reproduction, dairy nutrition, animal health and dairy management. Besides this, a dairy farm is constructed in the vicinity of Guelma with a capacity of 60 dairy cows, with the purpose of demonstration and trainings farm. The design and the construction of this farm “Mekhencha” is in full hands of the Algerian Ministry of Agriculture. The start-up and development of the management of this farm form a part of this project as well.
From 5 -9 February an inception mission took place for this project to Guelma. With all involved parties a start is made for an execution plan for the implementation of this project, taking into account all starting points. The basic level of the farmers, the average size of the farms of approximately 15 milking cows and the fact that many of them work “hors-sol” (meaning that no land is available for forage production), making them fully dependent of purchase of forage and feed. Quite a challenge but it goes without saying that there are many opportunities for adding value to the development of the regional dairy farming sector!
On the left picture the Dutch Team with the Director of ITMAS and the Director of the “Mekhencha” farm and on the right picture inspection of the barn with the Agricultural Attaché, Mr. Visser.