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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Reno, Nevada » Great Basin Rangelands Research » Research » Research Project #435294

Research Project: Rangeland Assessment and Beef Livestock Production Value Chain Assessment

Location: Great Basin Rangelands Research

Project Number: 2060-13610-002-17-N
Project Type: Non-Funded Cooperative Agreement

Start Date: Sep 1, 2018
End Date: Aug 31, 2023

Objective:
1) Conduct comprehensive resource assessment of rangelands and pastures, water availability, veterinary services etc. to get an accurate assessment of resource potential. 2) Conduct assessment of infrastructure critical for the production cycle, as well as logistics, storage, processing and other critical infrastructure. 3) Analyze demand drivers by examining potential markets, types of products, distribution channels, traceability and other demand variables. 4) Provide comprehensive assessment report based on best available science and practices, to support funding decisions for projects within framework of National Beef Production strategy.

Approach:
It is proposed that USDA and its Republic of Kazakhstan partners develop a multiphase approach that would include the following technology development, data collection, data analysis, and training programs. This approach would enable the assessment of key factors of production and techniques for prioritizing areas in need of development in Kazakhstan to implement the proposed National Livestock Production Strategy at local, regional, and national scales. Training Goals: Develop a systematic training programs that would teach through a series of short courses instruction in the following subjects to facilitate meeting a goals of having trained staff to implement the National Livestock Production Strategy: Rangeland Ecology, Soils and development of Ecological Site Descriptions; Data Analysis, Monitoring and Assessment Protocols. As necessary develop instruction associated with Animal Husbandry and Ranch Management; Forage Production and Water Management; Environmental Management and pollution control, and Marketing to meet Kazakhstan National Livestock Production Strategy. Data Collection Goals: 1) Develop a systematic method to collect information to assess status and health of rangelands across Kazakhstan; such that, local, regional, and national status reports can be developed and; 2) Develop a systematic method to collect soil, vegetation, topographic, climate, and remote sensing data to assess status and health of rangelands across Kazakhstan; such that, local, regional, and national status reports can be developed; 3) Develop a systematic approach to collect data on available infrastructure necessary for livestock production at the ranch scale; 4) Develop a systematic approach to collect data on feedlots, meat processing, storage and transportation hubs to facilitate development of national strategic plan to meat food security goals; 5) Develop a systematic approach to assess water requirements and availability for developing forage resources, livestock production and processing; 6) Evaluate existing non-point and point source pollution policies and practices associated with livestock production systems and provide options for meeting National goals for livestock production without diminishing environmental goods and services; 7) Assess capacity gaps in education and knowledge required for successful implementation of National Livestock Production Strategy. Assessment Goal: 1) Assess rainfall/runoff ratios, soil loss, and sediment yield of rangelands across target rangeland watershed; and 2) Assess benefits of hillslope and watershed scale revegetation treatments in reducing runoff, soil loss, sediment yield, increasing forage potential and health of the land across target rangeland watershed. Restoration Goals: 1) Develop technology, techniques, and plant materials to restore degraded rangelands; and 2) Develop equivalent of USDA Ecological Site Descriptions for providing information to livestock producers on how to manage rangelands in a sustainable manner to have safe and secure food and water supplies. 3) Support sustainable increase in livestock headcount.