Extense livestock farming

economic-dictionary

Extensive cattle ranching is one that takes place in large areas. Thus, these spaces are used for raising animals, in order to obtain an economic benefit.

Extensive cattle ranching is then characterized by being carried out on a large number of hectares. In this way, cattle are raised from which their meat or derived products such as dairy can be sold.

To implement this type of livestock, the producer imitates the environment in which the species usually lives. Trying, in this way, that its development is as natural as possible.

The objective of extensive farming is that the animals can move more freely instead of being limited to a small space, as can happen in intensive farming.

Types of livestock

Advantages and disadvantages of extensive livestock farming

Some advantages of extensive livestock are:

  • The soil is eroded less, compared to intensive livestock.
  • Less energy, labor and material resources are required per hectare.
  • They allow to preserve ecosystems and the diversity of species.
  • According to experts, it allows to obtain higher quality products.
  • Animals are treated more ethically and have greater well-being. For that reason, they suffer from fewer illnesses and behavior problems.

However, this type of livestock also faces a series of disadvantages or challenges:

  • It is more inefficient (requires higher costs) than intensive livestock.
  • The production cycle is longer than in intensive livestock farming, and does not necessarily meet consumer requirements. That is, there may be periods in which there is no production (because it is not the time when the resource can be obtained from the animal), but there is a demand that could be satisfied.
  • By not focusing on cost reduction, such as intensive livestock farming, their products tend to be more expensive and less price competitive in the market.
  • The products are not homogeneous, making them less attractive in the market.
  • It requires large areas of land, and in some cases deforestation is used to dispose of them.

Example of extensive livestock

An example of livestock is the raising of auquénidos. These are part of the camelid family and are originally from South America. They include the llama, the alpaca, the vicuña, and the guanaco.

In countries like Peru, Bolivia and Argentina these camelids are raised in wide spaces. In this way, it seeks to periodically take advantage of its wool (for the textile industry) and / or its meat.

For example, alpaca shearing, which is the process by which the fiber is separated from the animal's body, is carried out only between October and December. During those months, the weather conditions are right for the procedure.

This means that not all year round you can count on a homogeneous production of alpaca fiber for the textile sector. This differs from intensive farming where, for example, egg production is constant.

Tags:  derivatives opinion administration 

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