Lumang Women Livestock Feed Cooperative resumes its feed production

After remaining closed for almost seven years, Lumang Women Livestock Feed Cooperative in Trashigang has reopened the Feed Processing Machinery Unit.  The cooperative is now using the local farm produce and agricultural residue as raw materials to make feed. Although the unit is struggling with finding a better market, the group is betting on the quality for the survival of the unit this time.

A group of villagers led by the former Lumang Gup, Wangdi restarted works at the Feed Processing Machinery Unit in 2022.

The unit produces feed for both cattle and poultry using maize and mustard oil and its residue. The cooperative buys raw materials from the villagers in Lumang and a few nearby gewogs.

For now, they manufacture feeds only when they receive orders. Last year, the unit produced around 30 metric tons of feed.

The group charges Nu 1,600 per bag of feed.

“When I hear of farmers selling maize, I go to their house and buy them. It’s not just maize but we also buy mustard oil and its residue. This helps the farmers as they don’t have to search for a market. They make income just staying home,” said Wangdi, a member of Lumang Women Livestock Feed Cooperative.

The group has supplied feed to Dewathang and Orong in Samdrup Jongkhar and Pam and Merak in Trashigang, so far.

The women’s livestock feed cooperative was started in 2014 and was once shut down in 2017 after the cooperative failed to make a profit. Lack of raw materials and poor marketing hindered feed production.

Like in the past, the cooperative is still struggling to find a market even today.

Wangdi said, “Some people even ask me why I am running the unit without much profit. But if we stop a business saying it’s not profitable, I don’t think any business can survive. We have to wait and let consumers know how good our feed is for their cattle and poultry farm. Only then, they will buy our feed. We are aiming for it. I hope that one day our unit will grow.”

Currently the cooperative has only 11 members.

The Lumang Women Livestock Feed Cooperative was established with financial support from the Asian Development Bank and implemented by the Bhutan Association of Women Entrepreneurs, BAOWE in 2014.

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