Tailored dairy diets to complement your silage
21 Jul 2023
Caitlin Palmer, Dairy Technical Nutritionist
As 2023 first cut clamps are being opened and fed, we have been keeping a close eye on how they’re analysing. Last year, the challenge with some was low dry matter and high acid load silages. This year, the weather at silage time has been much better and the dry matter of the silages has been less variable, with the average at 31.5%.
The challenge with this year’s first cuts seems to be that the grass kept growing over the winter and this has led to more mature grass at cutting time. This is clear in many silage analyses with high lignin. This makes the silage less digestible and also means there is less energy available to the cow. Lower energy in the silage means less energy for milk production so the ration needs to be assessed and changes need to made to support milk production and fertility. The amount of fermentable carbohydrates in the silage this year is lower than last year and therefore these will need to be supplied by other raw materials in the ration to optimise the amount of microbial protein which is key for productivity.
Using our dynamic rationing programme, NutriONics, we’re able to assess all of the above in the ration and make suggestions to get the most out of first cut silages. We have compounds in our DairyPlus range which will complement these types of first cut and we can also create a bespoke meal which will be tailored to the ration and to the individual farm’s performance goals.
Get in touch and one of our dairy specialists can analyse your forages, discuss your ration and make suggestions to maximise performance and efficiency.