Artificial fertilizer versus cow manure
In South Punjab, from Okara to Rahim Yar Khan, three crops of maize or two crops of maize and one crop of Egyptian clover (barseen) can be cropped yearly for cows. The maize crop is ready to eat for cows in a period of seventy days. Expenses of each crop of corn, including land rent, is approximately Rs. 47,000 to Rs. 50,000 per crop in three months. The cost of artificial fertilizers from the above mentioned cost of each crop is Rs. 17,100, as of year June 2012, which comprises 2 bags Diamonium Phosphate (DAP), 1 bag of Sulphate of Potash (SoP) and 3 bags of Urea. The crop yield approximately equals 20 tons/acre.
On the other hand, four tractor loads of cow manure plus 2 bags of Urea are required for a single crop which yields a minimum of 23 to 25 tons/acre. Whereas, the cost is Rs. 5400 which includes the labour cost for loading and spreading the manure and diesel. Comparatively, there is increase in yield of 3 to 5 tons/acre with return totaling to Rs. 10,000 for the increased yield based upon Rs. 2.50 per kg. Moreover, also saving an additional amount of approximately Rs. 10,000 for using natural manure instead of artificial fertilizer, which rounds off to a profit of Rs. 20,000/acre for each crop.
These figures are based upon a 4-year cropping practice used at Sabzazar Farm. The rounded off profit of Rs. 20,000 per crop are either equivalent to 4 tractor loads of natural manure, one tractor load costing Rs, 5000 each; or feed 5 cows instead of 4 cows per acre per year.