Country Profiles

Inputs sector

Myanmar is providing adequate feed for cattle farming systems as it has a vast land area. Feeding management depends on the prevailing farming systems. In most systems, farmers use a combination of grazing on common land areas, and stall feeding through cut and carry forages and crop by-products. Farmers with a large number of cattle often use machine for chopping agricultural by-products for animal feed.

In the farming system dominated by paddy production, during the wet season, rice straw from the previous season along with green feed collected from roadside are used as the main source of feed. During the dry season, cattle are left to graze on the rice stubble. In the dry zone farming systems, cattle can graze in common land areas. Farmers prepare homemade feed from a diversity of agricultural by-products such as bean straw, groundnut cake, rice bran, corn by-products or peanut plants to feed their cattle.

The most common cattle breeds are Shwe Ni breeds that are red in colour and highly populated in the lower part of Myanmar including Mandalay and Magway divisions. Other common breeds are Pyar Sein breeds which are regarded as cross breeds which were derived from breeding between Indian breeds and local ones. Pyar Sein breeds are tall and white in colour, and are dominant in dry zone and upper regions. They are useful as draught as well as dairy purpose.

Both artificial insemination (AI) and natural service are practiced as methods of breeding in Myanmar. In the areas where AI is absent, natural service through private quality breeding bulls is preferred. A certain amount of fee is charged for breeding.

The introduction of exotic breeds to upgrade the indigenous breeds of cattle has a long held objective of the government. The LBVD has conducted an artificial insemination program since it implemented a five year World Bank project in the seventies, which supplied much of the equipment at station and field level. It established the artificial insemination centre and provided semen straws and liquid nitrogen. The AI service is heavily subsidised and based on inseminators located around Yangon and Mandalay divisions. In the cattle breeding program, the government’s policy aimed largely at distributing exotic semen and maintaining the level of cross breed at 50% to 75%.

The LBVD is the key sector agency with responsibility for animal health and production. The major focus of the LBVD currently is on animal health. A number of facilities that are being operated by the LBVD include a vaccine production centre, a veterinary assay laboratory, the central diagnostic laboratory, three regional veterinary diagnostic laboratories, four border area animal quarantine laboratories, and offices of the LBVD at State/division, district and township level.

At township level there is a township veterinary officer (TVO) and, depending on the township, deputy TVOs and animal health assistants who have undergone diploma level training. The LBVD township veterinary officer is implementing cattle and buffalo vaccination programs, conducting outbreak investigations, and issuing health certificates for cattle and buffalo at livestock markets.

The LBVD has traditionally focussed on vaccination programs for cattle and buffalo for mixed crop-livestock smallholders. This has primarily driven by the need to ensure the draft power. Only recently, the LBVD has begun to establish a capacity in epidemiology, a key skill in disease control.

Myanmar is not free from Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) and some OIE listed diseases such as Anthrax, Haemorrhagic Septicaemia (HS) and Black Quarter (BQ). The LBVD produces the vaccines for Anthrax, HS and BQ in required doses, but was not be able to produce FMD vaccine for required amount. The LBVD strengthens the quality and quantity of FMD vaccine, enforces the disease control activities and develops the establishment of FMD free zone.

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