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Document Type:Latin Dissertation
Language of Document:English
Record Number:54888
Doc. No:TL24842
Call number:‭1504675‬
Main Entry:Michael Stahlman
Title & Author:Phytase: Anatomy of an invisible win-win technologyMichael Stahlman
College:University of Missouri - Columbia
Date:2009
Degree:M.S.
student score:2009
Page No:111
Abstract:Phosphorous is necessary for crops and livestock, but excess phosphorous in rivers and lakes can result in eutrophication. The majority of the phosphorous in grains is in the form of phytate which cannot be digested by non-ruminants and is thus excreted in the feces. This requires adding inorganic phosphorous to the diet, representing an additional cost to the farmer. Phytase is an enzyme that frees the phosphorous and other nutrients that are in phytate so they can be digested and absorbed by the animals. Therefore phytase has the potential to decrease the cost of feed and decrease the phosphorous in feces, thus decreasing the potential for nutrient runoff. Phytase has been required in non-ruminant diets in some European countries since the 1990's. In the Midwest, phytase has been routinely incorporated in non-ruminant diets for several years based on cost savings. The knowledge of this win-win technology is affected by its relative invisibility; phytase easily blends in feed rations, requires no extra labor by the farmer, and has no visible effects on the animals. This study's focus is to examine the farmer's knowledge of phytase and the factors that affect its adoption. To our knowledge, there have been no studies which examine perceptions of phytase and the farm and farmer characteristics that affect stated adoption of phytase. A mail survey of 3014 poultry and livestock farmers was conducted in Iowa and Missouri in spring of 2006. The effective response rate was 37.4 percent. Over 60 percent of the respondents neither agreed nor disagreed (i.e. were neutral, 3 on a Likert scale of 1–5) with four questions regarding their perceptions of phytase characteristics: if it is profitable, improves water quality, is time consuming, and is complicated. This would indicate that farmers are not very knowledgeable about the practice. Additionally, while most non-ruminant farmers use phytase, no farmers with broilers, less than 5 percent of farmers with turkeys, and less than half of the swine farmers stated phytase use. Overall, only 18 percent of non-ruminant farmers stated phytase use, 46 percent stated they did not use phytase, and 36 percent stated they did not know. This suggests an information disconnect between farmers and feed manufacturers/contractors and that we are measuring knowledge rather than actual adoption. Farmers are more likely to state phytase adoption if they think phytase is profitable or not time consuming. They are also more likely to state phytase adoption if they give manure to other farms, located in Iowa, or are a designated CAFO. The farmers are less likely to state phytase use if they have off-farm income between
Subject:Social sciences; Agricultural economics; Studies; 0503:Agricultural economics
Added Entry:L. McCann
Added Entry:University of Missouri - Columbia