National Research Center for Animal Nutrition

Batpalathang, Bumthang Dzongkhag


Office of National Research Centre for Animal Nutrition

The temperate fodder seed production was initiated in 1982 by the then Grassland and Associated Fodder Research Centre (GAFRC) in Bumthang. Sub-tropical fodder species were introduced and tested at Subtropical Fodder Research Centre, Samtse (1986 –1994), and their seed production initiated on a trial basis in 1993 in Pema Gatshel. The National Fodder Seed Production Centre (NFSPC) was established in the beginning of the 6th FYP to cater the pasture and fodder seed production and supply in the country. Considering the need to have an agency to plan, coordinate, monitor and evaluate the feed and fodder development activities in the country, NFSPC was upgraded to the National Feed and Fodder Development Programme (NFFDP) in July 2003. From July 2012, the NFFDP was re-oriented as the National Center for Animal Nutrition (NCAN) with additional mandates.

The NCAN office is located 2 kilometres away from Chamkhar town above the Bathpalathang Domestic Airport in Bumthang Dzongkhag. 


NCAN as a premier institution at par excellence in feed & fodder development and management contributing towards attaining self sufficiency in livestock and livestock products.  


Provide effective and efficient feed and fodder services through technology generation, adoption and dissemination aimed at enhancing livestock production and productivity 


Function as a focal technical authority on feed and fodder development. 

Plan, coordinate and monitor all the feed and fodder development activities.

Generate and introduce feed and fodder technologies through research and development.

Provide technical backstopping to extension on feed and fodder development.

Maintain up-to date database on feed and fodder development activities.

Test and monitor the quality of all feed & fodder resources.

Implementation Strategy

Establish demonstration sites in farmers’ fields through plantations to showcase the available feed and fodder technologies in the country.

Expand/promote fodder germplasm production activities through contract seed producers, germplasm banks and raising fodder nurseries.  

Enhance farmers’ access to essential inputs like chopping and bailing machines, scythe, etc.

Promote ‘Contract Fodder Production’ and facilitate farmer-farmer marketing of feed and fodder.

Promote and facilitate adoption of technologies on enhancing nutritional status of crop residues (crop residue enrichment).

Facilitate setting up of feed mills in different parts of the country and initiate application of feed standards.

Introduce and promote fodder development and conservation technologies in the high altitude areas.

Facilitate the lease of government reserved forestland for grazing and improved pasture development.

Provide technical backstopping on rangeland management, improved pasture and fodder development, renovation and management, fodder germ-plasm production and feed formulation.

Enhance feed and fodder technology dissemination through production of extension materials in form of leaflets, booklets, newsletters, articles, manuals and video clips.

Functions of the Units

1. Rangeland Unit

  • Identify and implement appropriate rangeland management practices and tools for sustainable rangeland management.
  • Revive degraded rangelands through range re-seeding, improved pasture development and soil land management practices based on the principles of economic viability, technical feasibility and environmental sensitivity.
  • Conduct rangeland research and development activities for sustainable utilization of rangeland resources through effective planning, coordination, monitoring and evaluation.  
  • Promote high yielding fodder species and feed supplements such as Feed Blocks and Urea Molasses Mineral Blocks in high altitude areas to address winter fodder shortage.
  • Initiate and promote community based rangeland resource management through establishment of community groups  
  • Develop, produce and publish rangeland maps.  
  • Develop rules, regulations and guidelines for the lease of government reserved forest land for grazing and improved pasture development.
  • Provide technical backstopping on rangeland development and management.

2. Fodder Extension Unit

  • Plan and coordinate the development of improved pasture and allied fodder resources in the country.
  • Integrate pasture and fodder development with other agricultural land uses.  
  • Promote and disseminate technologies on fodder use optimization and fodder conservation such as the crop residue usage and other non-conventional feed resources.
  • Provide support services in land preparation for improved pasture and fodder development, harvest and feeding by promoting mechanization. 
  • Initiate and promote the contract fodder production system by forming new farmer’s group or by incorporating the contract fodder production activity into the existing farmer’s groups. 
  • Develop, manage and maintain the on-station live herbarium of improved pasture and fodder species.  Maintain database of the improved pasture and fodder development in the country.

3. Fodder Germplasm Unit

  • Plan and coordinate the pasture and fodder germplasm production and distribution in the country.
  • Maintain the basic pasture and fodder germplasm for use in extension.
  • Introduce and maintain fodder legume and agricultural inoculums production.
  • Monitor and evaluate fodder germplasm quality and develop fodder germplasm standard for Bhutan. 
  • Providing technical backstopping on fodder germplasm development and production.
  • Facilitate and explore the export and import of fodder seeds.

•       Conduct laboratory analysis of feed and fodder resources to determine the nutrient contents.

  • Facilitate establishment of feed mills and provide technical advisory services in feed formulation. 
  • Develop a Standard Feed and Feeding Regime for Bhutan. 
  • Provide technical backstopping on animal nutrition and feeding.
  • Evaluate and monitor the quality of all commercial feeds.