SHANMUGAVELU S.1, WAN ZAHARI M.2, WONG H.K.1 AND MARDHATI M.1
A beef feedlot production decision support system (DSS) was developed based on Microsoft? Excel. The DSS comprises of three modules i) an ingredient database ii) a least-cost ration formulation module and iii) beef growth simulation module. The program uses empirical equations developed for tropical beef to simulate nutrient requirements and daily body weight gains based on the formulated feed ration. The formulated least cost ration can be pasted automatically into the growth model to evaluate performance and economic viability. The growth model calculates nutrient available and computes body weight gain on a daily basis, summates weight gain and stops at the targeted body weight. The data output include i) days to reach target body weight, ii) cumulative feed consumed, iii) anticipated average daily gain, iv) total cost of feed (concentrates and grass), and v) gross profit per cattle. If a portion of the feed is fed as grass, then the model also computes the pasture land required in hectares, based on the forage species chosen. It is anticipated that the developed model can assist cattle entrepreneurs and farmers in the development of the beef cattle industry in Malaysia.