Engineer’s experiment with Boer goat

T.S. Umesh crosses the Boer with the native Talcher breed and they fetch a good price

T.S. Umesh, 47-year-old from Tarabenahalli of Tumakuru district, chose agriculture instead of office soon after completing his engineering degree in 1990.

People laughed at him then for returning to the village to take up farming. Undeterred by this, Mr. Umesh charted his own course in farming on his 7.5 acres of land and used his engineering aptitude and outlook to better practices.

After rearing poultry birds for a long time, he is now experimenting with foreign breeds of goats that have a niche market.

He brought a male Boer goat and two female goat kids from South Africa through his contacts in Pune, shelling out over ₹2 lakh. The Boer goat is known for its quick growth, huge yield of meat as a fully grown adult can weigh upto 150 kg.

However, Mr. Umesh has experimented with this breed by crossing them with the Talcher variety of native female goats. Newborns from this combination weigh in the range of 20 to 30 kg in six months, he said.

Package plan

The varieties which are crossed between Boer and Talcher breeds are being sold at a rate of ₹1,500 to ₹3,500 a kg. Mr. Umesh plans to evolve a package under which one such crossed male and five females would be available for around ₹1,50,000. However, a pure Boer male goat costs ₹7 lakh. “Presently, these goats are ideal for breeding purpose than meat as they come with heavy pricing and are a rarity in India,” he observed. Mr. Umesh’s stall is a huge hit at the ongoing Krishi Mela.

“Agriculture is no way inferior to high-profile jobs in cities. But you must work hard and wait patiently for returns,” Mr. Umesh said. He earns around ₹15 lakh a year from agriculture. His advise to farmers: “Produce your own manure for crops by taking up animal husbandry. Do not depend on chemical fertilisers as they affect soil fertility.”

1.7 lakh visitors

Despite the rain and slush, GKVK campus saw 1.7 lakh visitors on the second day of Krishi Mela on Friday. In addition to this, 5.2 lakh people watched the proceedings of the event on the digital platform. The number of visitors will increase over the weekend. About 7,000 visitors tasted the rural lunch organised at the venue, the highlight of which was ragi mudde.

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