With increased protein self-sufficiency you get several benefits and they are important both at farm level, regional and national level. When you cultivate protein plants you get less risks connected with imported fodder, you get higher degree of food security and a better maintenance. The money gone into domestic production will increase the consuming and amount of domestic final products. Domestic protein plants, especially peas and broad beans cultivation and use has increased during the last years. New protein plant sorts, new innovative products and new enterprenours are entering the market. The growing demand support the domestic protein plant growing and use. The use of protein plants as fodder for animals has also increased which lead to a higher degree of protein plant self-sufficiency.
At a farm level the protein plant cultivation:
- increase the diversity of filed use and in crop rotation
- improves the soil cultivation characteristica
- brings flexibility in fodder harvest time
- decrease the need for buying fertilisers and fodder
Protein plant cultivation in ecological cultivation and via this the biological nitrogen fixation is an important part of the farm crop rotation. Protein that comes from different fodder secures ecological farm animal need for proteins.
Protein plants cultivated in Finland has large possibilities in increasing protein self-sufficiency. There is several different plants to choose among and also several different harvesting methods. Good domestic protein plants are:
- broad beans
- rape (Brassica napus)
- Brassica rapa ssp. oleifera
These can either be harvested or be used as fodder or both methods can be used.
Cooperation between farms is one way to develop protein self-sufficiency. Protein plants cultivated in Finland offers many possibilities for this. All animal farms do not grow protein plants at the own farm or they grow too little. At grain farms protein plants are good plants to be cultivated between grains. Farm cooperation benefits are shared and at the same time they support the accessability and use of domestic protein plants.
During the project information about different protein plants, their cultivation and use was distributed. Information about several final theseis were distributed.