Cut-and-Carry Livestock Management - system

November 11, 2020

Definition: A livestock management system in which farmers produce high-quality forage or livestock feed that they harvest and bring to animals in their pen. Unlike an “open graze” system that would allow animals to roam the land for food, cut-and-carry livestock management gives the farmer more control.

A Closer Look: Cut-and-carry livestock management provides many advantages such as high-quality fodder for livestock and increased profits for farmers. This system can also provide environmental benefits by reducing overgrazing and soil compaction.

In Forest Gardens throughout the tropics, families typically use walls, thorny branches, poles, or multi-purpose living fences to keep cows, sheep, and goats out of the gardens, and Forest Garden farmers keep animals penned in other enclosures. They cut branches from their Forest Garden trees (from alleys, contours, or Green Walls), which they then carry to feed to their penned livestock in another location: ”cut-and-carry”.

Benefits of Cut-and-Carry Livestock Management:

  • More efficient use of available land
  • Improved gains and productivity
  • Reduced risk of damaging the ecosystem
  • Increased feed efficiency
  • Reduced input cost and replacement of costly animal feed
  • Higher quality fodder that is readily available for livestock
  • Better disease management and protection
  • Efficient manure management