feed supply chain issues

Is it possible to reduce feed costs while increasing productivity?

As a nutritionist, I am asked about which feed ingredients have the biggest impact on input costs and dairy performance. One improvement you can make is to use high-quality ingredients, such as ExPress® soymeal, in the ration for dairy cattle.

First, ExPress® soy meal provides both protein (i.e. amino acids) and energy for the cow. In addition, high-shear dry extrusion promotes the generation of rumen by-pass (i.e. not degraded in the rumen) protein and fat which support the cow’s performance. This has been described here and here in previous blogs. When compared to other by-pass ingredients – which often require more than one ingredient to be fed – ExPress® soymeal provides both by-pass protein and by-pass fat in a single ingredient, which can save the producer between $0.21 – $0.37/cow/day in diet costs.

This leads to the second advantage, measurable responses when using high-quality feed ingredients to improve cow performance. More specifically, better efficiency converting protein into milk, resulting in increased milk production. As a result, fewer inputs (i.e., simplified diet

with 1 ingredient) promote better growth and performance (i.e., milk production) and in turn, drive revenue.

In addition to ExPress® soymeal, other extruded ingredients, like high-shear dry extruded corn, can be used to lead to success and potentially prevent profitability loss in a dairy operation. When milk prices are low, you can reformulate the ration to include more extruded corn and fewer expensive protein-containing ingredients, and overall diet costs will decrease by $0.10 – $0.20/cow/day – hopefully allowing the producer to preserve a margin on milk sales. A recent analysis performed by the Ohio Dairy Resource Center revealed the income over nutrient cost for cows producing 70-85 lbs. milk/day was $0.11/lbs. As ingredient prices increase, this margin of profitability begins to shrink. Therefore, using the appropriate combinations of consistent, high-quality extruded corn and soy can reduce the overall diet cost, while maintaining performance as much as possible, pushing towards profitability.

Efficiency of a dairy operation improves by utilizing high-quality, consistent ingredients – ExPress® soy meal and high-shear dry extruded corn. Want to learn more? Click here to contact a team member.

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