SEMARANG – The Department of Animal Science of Faculty of Animal and Agricultural Sciences of Diponegoro University (UNDIP) held an international seminar entitled ISSRP (International Seminar on Sustainable Ruminant and Poultry Production in the Tropics) 2021 which discussed about food security, especially the provision of animal protein in relation to the Covid-19 pandemic. In this activity, 36 papers were discussed, which were discussed intensely in 3 groups.

When opening ISSRP 2021, the Dean of Faculty of Animal and Agricultural Sciences Undip, Prof. Dr. Ir. Bambang Waluyo H.E.P., M.S., M.Agr., IPU, said that the challenges faced related to sustainable food security are not only the current pandemics, but also climate change and problems related to animal health and the greenhouse effect. “Climate change causes more extreme weather events such as droughts and an increase in natural disasters such as forest fires and floods, all of which can have a significant impact on animal welfare,” said Prof Bambang Whep, on Thursday (21/10/2021).

According to Prof. Bambang Whep, the pandemic situation causes the distribution of livestock products to experience problems considering the very significant distance between production and consumption sites. The Covid-19 pandemic is limiting food distribution. On the other hand, the growth of the human population is also very fast so that the problem of food security is becoming increasingly complex.

The increase in global population creates increased demand for livestock production for sources of income, protein and other resources. Meanwhile, food production, especially livestock, does not only face the problem of increasing production from the aspect of cultivation, but also other challenges such as natural disasters, pandemics, and demands to protect the environment by reducing gas production.

At the seminar with the theme “The Demand for Welfare and Sustainable Ruminant and Poultry Production for Food Sovereignty during the Covid-19 Pandemic”, academics, scientists, and relevant stakeholders play an important role in ensuring that food security programs do not have a negative impact on animal health and welfare.

The seminar that was held this time was an opportunity for every stakeholder to share ideas through knowledge exchange while strengthening and expanding their network. “This seminar is expected to make us work together in contributing ideas related to the sustainable development agenda,” he explained.

As the Dean of Faculty of Animal and Agricultural Sciences, Bambang Whep expressed his gratitude and appreciation to all partners, namely the committee, speakers, and presenters, as well as all participants who have participated in the International Seminar on Sustainable Ruminant and Poultry Production in the Tropics.

Chairperson of the ISSRP 2021 Committee, Dr. Ari Prima, said that the seminar participants were from Japan, the Philippines, Pakistan, Indonesia and a number of other countries. This seminar aimed to answer the challenges of the current condition especially about food security due to the fast-growing global population. This seminar was held online considering the COVID-19 pandemic. “Even though it is held online, I hope this seminar can be an active interaction between participants and presenters,” said Dr. Ari Prima.

The Head of the Department of Animal Science Undip, Dr. Sri Sumarsih, S.Pt., M.P., hoped that this seminar can become a forum for experts in sustainable ruminant and poultry production to share knowledge and work in the field on how to meet the demands for welfare and sustainable ruminant as well as poultry production for sovereignty during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, Vice Rector IV Undip, Prof. Dr. Ir. Ambariyanto, M.Sc representing the Undip Rector, said that his party welcomed this international seminar. “We are honored to have you all at the International Seminar on Sustainable Ruminant and Poultry Production in the Tropics. I hope the conference organized by the Department of Animal Science Undip will contribute many ideas,” said Prof. Ambariyanto in his speech.

He acknowledged that human activities, including in the agricultural sector, now make a significant contribution to the phenomenon of climate change. Both the current rate of change and the impacts reflect human activities and greenhouse gas production. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) of the United Nations has reported that climate change is expected to have impact on food supply, geographic distribution, the spread of disease and disrupt animal welfare.

“Therefore, on behalf of Diponegoro University, I feel very honored for this privilege to host this International Conference. I believe this conference will be a good place to share the latest discoveries in their respective fields and to build partnerships, so that we can move closer to discuss the challenges related to the livestock sector in terms of environmental and animal welfare issues,” he explained.

A number of speakers were present at this international seminar, including Prof. Akira Otshuka from the Faculty of Agriculture, Kagoshima University, Japan; Prof., Renato Sta Ana Vega from the Institute of Animal Science, University of the Philippines Los Banos, Philippines; Faheem Ahmed Khan, Ph.D. from the Faculty of Science, University of Central Punjab, Pakistan; and Prof. Agung Purnomoadi from Faculty of Animal and Agricultural Sciences, Diponegoro University.

In his presentation, Prof. Akira Otshuka  said that during the current Covid-19 pandemic, the need for food for humans must be carefully considered. In getting food, there must not be obstacles caused by a number of factors. Akira believed that breakthroughs are needed in the development of poultry feed. One of the recommendations is the use of aspergillus awamori as a feed additive for broiler production.

In Kagoshima, which is the capital of Japan’s Kagoshima Prefecture, this raw material is very popular. Aspergillus awamori itself is made from wheat rice and potatoes. Additional food ingredients for livestock are usually given to broilers.

According to him, the use of Aspergillus awamori  for poultry feed can increase the growth of broilers and is safe for livestock. Likewise in the production process, it is safe for the environment. (PR team)