DEEPAK KUMAR*, RAJESH KUMAR MEENA, RAKESH KUMAR, HARDEV RAM, RAKESH KUMAR AND GANESH KUMAR KOLI
Agronomy Section, ICAR-National Dairy Research Institute, Karnal-132001 (Haryana), India
Department of Genetics & Plant breeding, CCS Haryana Agricultural University, Hisar-125004 (Haryana), India
*(e-mail : email@example.com)
(Received : 12 December 2021; Accepted : 29 December 2021)
India has the world’s largest livestock population and milk production, but the livestock productivity is very low due to scarcity of quality green fodder especially during the hot summer month. To improve the profitability of small and marginal farmers in terms of the livestock sector, fodder beet can be a strong contender compared to other fodder crops in arid and semi-arid regions. Fodder beet (Beta vulgaris L.) is a temperate crop now spreading towards subtropical countries, where it can be grown successfully during the winter season. It is a high yielding potential crop treated as forage concentrate and provides high-quality green fodder up to June. High energy, water, sugar, low to medium protein and low fiber content makes it more palatable and digestible, can be cultivated profitably even with saline water and in salt-affected soils. Under diverse environmental conditions, agronomic practices significantly influence the growth, yield, and quality of fodder beet. Its full potential is widely recognised in world and it could possibly be a high yielding forage option for the Indian farmers as well.
Key words: Fodder beet, livestock, nutritional aspects and agronomic practices