Progeny Testing Program
We have developed a field oriented performance testing program for buffalo bulls, which is approved by Indian Council of Agricultural Research, New Delhi, as one of the Network Program Centres. Under this program, the insemination records of all semen straws used for its beneficiary farmers are maintained in the software application ‘Ai-CEN’ developed in collaboration with Chitale Dairy. The registered buffaloes are ear-tagged and insured with cost paid by Chitale Dairy.
Herd Health & Productivity Management Program
Herd Health and Productivity Management (HHPM), a qualitative system of data analysis, synthesis, diagnosis and metabolic profiling, has helped the Chitales exponentially improve the quality of their milk production. R & D efforts spanning over 3 years, made in collaboration with the Department of Medicine of the Bombay Veterinary College, have led to the creation of a standard blueprint which acts as a guiding protocol for rural dairy initiatives. As part of a novel approach, an entire herd is treated as a single unit to isolate common issues and standardize their resolution. Nutrition, management, herd sanitation and hygiene are the four core areas that HHPM focuses on.
The three-year period of intensive R & D (from 1999 to 2001) saw landmark breakthroughs in metabolic profiling of cattle breeds. One of the path-breaking approaches taken was parallel hematological and biochemical analysis of herd pathology samples against human results – an attempt to achieve breakthroughs. An independent profiling lab was subsequently set up. This methodical approach has encouraged many Milk Unions to embrace a scientific model for animal research planning.
Chitale Diagnostic Laboratory
This laboratory was established in 1999. The lab is equipped with dry-chemistry analyzer, ELISA, bacterial culture, hematology and serology, hormone testing, investigation facilities. It is available for use by farmers and veterinarians from adjoining districts and milk unions.
Sugarcane Based Feeding System In Buffaloes
Under this sub-function, feeding trials are conducted by the Group accompanied by metabolic profiling at regular intervals in an attempt to standardize the sugarcane feeding procedure. A well-balanced feed formula, a result of years of trials and improvements, has served as a consistent metabolic stabiliser for the Chitale cattle herds.
Digestive Efficiency In Cows & Buffaloes
A collaborative study in association with Evialis International, France, was undertaken to devise a scientific feeding strategy for buffaloes. As part of the lab tests, standardized feed was tested across fistulated buffaloes in Bhilawadi and fistulated cows in France, to be analyzed in Evialis' state-of-the-art facility. A comparative nutritional study helped our analysts gauge the exact nutritive potency of the local feed.
Lactation, Physiology & Behavioural Analysis In Buffaloes
Conducted in collaboration with the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences as part of a doctoral research program, the project sought to identify suitable milking techniques for buffaloes. A study of behavioural and lactation indicators helped us understand how to best tackle 'hard milkers' – buffaloes that exhibited tendencies of 'letting down of milk'.
Sonographic Pregnancy Diagnosis
We are the pioneers in adopting the sonography method to detect pregnancies in cows and buffaloes. Our tests are capable of diagnosing pregnancies within 32 days, with an accuracy ratio of 99%. A portable sonography machine has helped us further ease the rigors of calf delivery for our breeds.
Our scientific calf rearing endeavours have helped us bring down infant mortality rates to less than 2% annually. Feeding sessions at regular intervals and constant improvement in colostrum nutrition has helped us achieve optimum breed health.
Microchip Identification System
Indigenously-developed microchips are used to ear-tag cattle. These devices, embedded with 4 KB memory slots, are capable of chronologically recording key data pertaining to livestock well-being. This information can be fed to a chip via the medium of a handheld reader.
Mobile Veterinary Services
In an attempt to bring animal care closer to rural grassroots, the mobile wing of our dairy takes services such as pregnancy diagnosis, nutrition consultancy, fodder development, etc., at the farmers' doorstep. A team of senior vets (gynaecologist, physician, surgeon) conduct free camps and referral sessions, resolving critical cattle issues (detected in 70 % to 80% of the cases) in due course.
Health & Infertility Camps
Health and infertility camps are held at regular intervals. The milk suppliers (utpadaks) are encouraged to bring problem breeders, surgical cases as well as clinical cases to the camps for medical opinion given by senior veterinarians.