The cane rat is the large, blunt-nosed form of its urban counterpart, appears to be quite docile. But it’s got a preference for fingers. “You need skill to be able to handle them,” says Francis Ababio, who teaches students how to raise rodents called grasscutters at Kwadaso the Agricultural College in Kumasi the second city of Ghana. It is a popular delicious delicacy in Ghana’s cities and is a staple of the diet of rural people. The grass it eats in its stomachs is believed to be a great ingredient in wonderful soups.Most grasscutter meat is still sourced directly from wild animals. But conservationists and authorities are trying to limit hunts for bushmeat due to concerns that it’s destroying the environment and causing disruption to food chains. The Ebola outbreak of 2014 slowed demand, however, 579 million forest mammals, ranging from animals like porcupines to monkeys, are consumed every throughout the year across central Africa as per the UN. A study from Goethe University Frankfurt found that 39% of forests within the Congo Basin are under severe stress due to hunting.
Breeding of grasscutter
Grasscutters are a large African rodents, and are regarded as a significant protein source as well as a popular and delicious meat. We are currently working on an exclusive breeding program to aid the grasscutter farmers within the Upper West region of Ghana.Grasscutters (Thryonomys swinderianus) are large African rodents that are known as a major protein source for rural areas. source and a well-known speciality meat. Due to this, the species is extensively hunted across its range of native. attempts to commercialize and domesticate grasscutter, however, have proven unproductive, in part because of the lack of breeding that is selective, that limits both the quantity and the quality of the animals provided to farmers.
Alongside The University of Ghana and a local non-profit business, Grasscutter Initiative for Rural Transformation (GIfT) We are working to create an exclusive breeding program, enhance the management of farm animals and increase awareness of market opportunities for small-scale businesses. This project is funded through the Innovate UK Agri-tech Catalyst scheme, and will enhance the activities of Kyoto University in Japan. This project will not just aid the grasscutter farming community by increasing the profitability and productivity and profit margins, but it will also benefit rural communities that are poor within the Upper West region of Ghana by facilitating access to protein that is affordable.
There are a few reasons to raise Grasscutters and Cane Rats
It is possible to start growing grasscutters using a wood cage, and one colony (a group consisting of breeders for grasscutter). A colony of grasscutters consists of four females and one male. A colony’s cost varies between N40,000 to 50,000 (Nigerian Naira) according to the species and age. You can build a decent cage by an expert carpenter at less than N10,000. The cage can be put wherever you want as long as it’s not placed in direct sunlight.
For Production of Meat
One method of producing meat that is suitable for human consumption is to raise grasscutters. They grow quickly, are robust and long-living giant rats. They achieve a substantial body mass in a short period of time, and consume little. This means they are highly efficient convertors of feed. They are able to convert and feed on a broad variety of vegetables and grasses into meat. There are many consumers of bush meat around the world. Males grow to an average body size that is double the size of the meat of a chicken. Additionally, Thryonomys swinderianus grows fast and by 12 weeks old they are ready to be offered as breeders. The combination of their rapid maturation and low cost of food allows cane rats for keeping and reared to sell for reasons.
To Create Employment Opportunities
The financing, manufacturing, processing transporting, exporting and importing of the grasscutter’s products provides job opportunities for lots of people. In addition, keeping grasscutter for human consumption locally will significantly lower the cost of imports from turkey, fish and chicken, as well as frozen meat. Additionally, there is a rise in Forex profits when grasscutter products are sold abroad. The GDP will grow as well as unemployment and inflation will decrease.
To Earn Profit
Grasscutter farming can be one of the methods that can bring food to your table and earn money for your pocket without having to spend on a large sum of money. You can make money through selling grasscutters to restaurant proprietors (live or smoke) or you can offer manure to small-holding farmers as well as worm farmers and also sell it to people who plan to grow their own.
It is an Ready Market
No doubt! The grasscutter’s meat is tasty and there’s an abundance of market for cane rats or grasscutters. People frequent eateries to eat the grasscutter’s meat and, consequently, restaurant owners want to increase their prices to please their patrons. However many rats that you own you are sure to find people who want to purchase them. Do not overlook to tell the buyer that they are low on cholesterol and researchers have confirmed that there are health benefits eating it. The nutritionists also advise people to eat “bush meat” because it is part of the category that includes white meat. It is important to know that eating the flesh of grasscutters is not a matter of religion or cultural restrictions. Thus, they are widely accepted.