Since its inception in 2013, the Partnership has maintained a strong focus on exchanging knowledge and developing skills to enhance the Indonesian red meat and cattle sector.
Initiatives such as the Skills Development Short Course Program, the Commercial Cattle Breeding and Management Training Program, and the NTCA Indonesia-Australia Pastoral Program (NIAPP) have now trained hundreds of Indonesian participants in all aspects of commercial cattle breeding.
Despite this established success, the commitment to sharing knowledge between Australian and Indonesian cattle experts continues to grow.
Across 2019, the Partnership launched new training initiatives in reproduction management and pregnancy testing for veterinarians and veterinary paramedics, implemented a new certification scheme for professional breeding managers, and ramped up its internship program for animal husbandry graduates.
Reproduction Management Training
Because animal health and reproduction play a pivotal role in the success of any cattle management program, the Partnership identified the need for more specific training of Indonesian veterinarians involved in cattle breeding operations.
To equip veterinarians with adequate technical and practical knowledge on reproductive techniques, the Partnership hosted the first intake for its Reproduction Management Training course from 15 July to 19 July 2019.
Facilitated by Bogor Agricultural University (IPB), the training involved classroom-based learning on topics such as animal reproduction, animal health and specific reproduction management within a cattle breeding enterprise.
A total of 17 participants visited the research facility at IPB, as well as making a field trip to PT Lembu Jantan Perkasa in Serang, Banten.
Dr Srihadi Agungpriyono, the Dean of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine at IPB, says institutions— including universities, nongovernment organisations, government agencies and private sector companies—need to work together to identify and solve reproduction issues within the Indonesian cattle industry.
“This is why reproduction management training for veterinarians is important,” Dr Agungpriyono says. “There are three pillars that ensure success in cattle reproduction—the animals, the environment and the human resources.”
Pregnancy Test Training
Veterinary paramedics can play an important role in monitoring reproductive efficiency and detecting problems early in a cow’s pregnancy cycle.
Unfortunately, however, many paramedics in the field lack the skills to conduct proper pregnancy testing processes.
For this reason, the Partnership held its first round of Pregnancy Test Training for Veterinary Paramedics from 5 August to 26 August 2019.
The training was facilitated by the National Artificial Insemination Center (BBIB) in Singosari, Malang, a research facility owned by Indonesia’s Ministry of Agriculture.
There were 15 veterinary paramedics who participated in the training, each selected from various cattle breeding operations, including feedlot companies, integrated cattle and oil palm enterprises, and smallholder farmers groups.
Nova Oktalia, a paramedic for the Sawah Boncah Farmers Group in West Sumatra, says the training she received was very useful.
She points out that many smallholder farmers are often not aware of when their cows have fallen pregnant, or if there is a problem with the pregnancy.
“If I can do the test and assess the pregnancy earlier, then I can inform the farmers to quickly make a decision,” Nova says.
Cattle Breeding And Management Training
From 1 September to 25 September 2019, the Partnership successfully held the fourth round of its popular Commercial Cattle Breeding and Management Training Program.
Designed for professionals from across the Indonesian cattle industry and facilitated by Gadjah Mada University (UGM), the course provides insights into sustainable and commercially feasible breeding and production methods.
The 20 participants in the program’s fourth intake undertook classroom-based lessons at UGM, observed cattle management models at commercial sites in Central Java and Central Kalimantan, visited an open grazing research facility owned by Indonesia’s Ministry of Agriculture, and travelled to Australia for 10 days of knowledge exchange with their southern counterparts.
A total of 80 participants from across 39 cattle breeding enterprises have now participated in the Commercial Cattle Breeding and Management Training Program.
Breeding Manager Certification
As part of the Commercial Cattle Breeding and Management Training Program, the Partnership has collaborated with the Indonesian Livestock Professional Certification Agency to launch a certification scheme that confirms the credentials of professional breeding managers.
The assessment for this professional certification is conducted in both theoretical and practical areas to measure the knowledge and technical capabilities of participants in breeding management.
With 29 participants certified in March and a further 14 recognised in August, the Partnership was able to officially certify a total of 43 professional breeding managers during 2019.
Breeding Manager of Great Giant Livestock, Paulina Yuniarsih, who received the certification, says the scheme will help professionals like her to continue to innovate and keep their qualifications up to date.
“The certification adds value to my work,” Paulina says.
Meanwhile, Lidwina, who also went through the certification, believes getting the certificate proved she has the knowledge and skills to thrive in her career and future. “This will be useful for my career as a breeding manager,” she added.
Animal Husbandry Internships
During 2019, the Partnership made major strides in developing its Internship Program in collaboration with the Indonesian Society for Animal Husbandry (ISPI).
The program allows Indonesian Animal Husbandry graduates—particularly those who have undertaken NIAPP—to gain work experience over three months with large-scale cattle breeding enterprises.
“It’s an important program to improve the skills and expertise of graduates,” says Muhsin Al Anas, who is a NIAPP graduate, a lecturer at UGM, and the coordinator of the Internship Program from ISPI.
“Participants are able to know in detail the business processes within the industry, something that they will not have been exposed to on a university campus.”
Not only does the Internship Program provide stronger pathways to employment for the interns, it gives the hosting commercial enterprises a mechanism to identify potential employees and recruit future industry leaders.
The Partnership supported 25 new graduates to do an internship under the program in 2019, with a rigorous selection process in place to ensure that 25 of the brightest graduates will benefit from internships each year into the future.
With the success of its many and varied training programs across 2019, the Partnership will continue to help improve human resources in the Indonesian cattle industry throughout 2020.
For more information on the Partnership’s Skills Development Programs, visit redmeatcattlepartnership.org
Graduates Get a Glimpse Of Industry Life
Nur Akhidatun Anisa graduated from the Animal Husbandry Faculty at Gadjah Mada University in November 2019.
Through the Partnership’s Internship Program, she was assigned to the PT Juang Jaya Abdi Alam feedlot in South Lampung through until February 2020.
Anisa says she had some interesting experiences working in the feedlot, including unloading more than 5,000 cows from a ship and herding the cattle from their sheds to the grazing pastures.
“At one time, while herding the cows, there was one cow that slipped and fell,” the 22-year-old explains. “Two other people and I tried so hard to get it back on its feet, and the cow ended up chasing us!” she laughs.
Another intern, Bintang Setia, a 22-year-old who graduated from Brawijaya University, takes a more aspirational view of the program.
Bintang says he hopes to be adept in the business processes of a cattle company, while developing managerial skills for the red meat industry.
“Hopefully, I can have enough knowledge to one day own my own beef cattle company,” he says.