Expat devises machine to turn agri surplus into fodder

ABU DHABI — A machine devised by an expatriate engineer at the General Directorate of Agriculture in Abu Dhabi has turned the surplus in agricultural produce to animal fodder.

By Wael Yousef

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Published: Sat 13 Aug 2005, 10:15 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 7:13 PM

Officials said over Dh3 million worth of fodder has been sold.

The machine is said to be the first of its kind to grind and produce animal fodder. The engineer is Ahmed Salem, an Egyptian, who is the technical supervisor of the project. He made mechanical alterations on a number of machines at the directorate, which saved a lot of government money, besides increasing the production capacity of the machines.

The importance of the new machine stems from the fact that it uses thousands of tonnes of yellow corn received from farmers years ago, and left in open air at the Agricultural Marketing warehouses.

"The new machine went through two phases: the first one dealt with the separation of corn from the comb and was a very successful operation as we managed to get large quantities; and the second was to try and grind all the corn with the comb. This was a great move, and it saved so much time and effort, and the production capacity of each machine was 350-400kg of corn animal fodder per hour," said Salem.

The idea behind the project is to utilise the corn harvest and use it as animal fodder, according to Rashid Mohammed Ali bin Rasas Al Mansouri, Head of the General Directorate of Agriculture in Abu Dhabi. The fodder will be used to feed camels, goats, cows, birds and other. The old corn was to be kept in two areas: Baniyas and Hisan in the Eastern Region.

"We have thought of some methods to make use of this neglected fortune. We started to look for machines that will grind the harvest and change the corn into animal fodder. The equipment available in the market was not suitable for the job because the quantities were huge," said Mansouri.

He added that technical cadres were able to manufacture five machines to grind the old corn. The product is to be sold to farmers "at very competitive prices, and with superior specifications, as mentioned in laboratory reports by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries and Abu Dhabi Municipality."

From the nutritional point of view, the laboratory tests were completely compliant with international standards pertaining to fodder made from corn.

According to Dr Abdul Wahhab Al Jabouri of the directorate said the results of tests at Al Wathba Veterinary Laboratory showed that there is a big percentage of calcium in the fodder.

Ali Al Muta'afi, Head of the Technical Affairs Unit at the General Directorate of Agriculture in Abu Dhabi, said that the cost of the project was very low, and the results were appreciated by UAE farmers.

Part of the fodder quantities are being sold directly to farmers, and the rest is being sent to various regions like Ghayathi, Hamim, Madinat Zayed, Khatam, Sala'a and Tharwaniya Centre.

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