Autumn grazing provides cattle and sheep with a nutrient rich, low cost feed and it is clear that improved grass utilisation will directly impact farm profitability via improved animal performance. Here, Rumenco’s Dr Alison Bond explains how producers can improve grazing utilisation this autumn.
“One of the major advantages UK farmers have over their European and international counterparts is the ability to grow high quality, nutrient rich grass for between seven and ten months of the year (geography dependent) owing to
our temperate climate, (typical) good rainfall and favourable land”explains Dr Bond. “But high-quality grass must be fully utilised in order to achieve its full value for optimal animal performance.”
“It is important to remember that the protein content of well-managed grass remains at over 20% throughout the grazing season” she continues. “However, in order to fully utilise this protein (comprising around 90% rumen- degradable protein) we must ensure an optimal supply of readily fermentable energy in the form of starch or sugar.”
“Additionally, efficient utilization of rumen degradable protein will help maximise the growth of the rumen microbe population therefore optimizing forage and overall diet utilisation” she states
Whilst naturally-occurring soluble sugars found in grass offer the perfect source of energy for this purpose, research shows that their concentrations tend to decrease by around 50% from mid-summer through to autumn . This means that the recommended ratio of 2:1 sugar to protein is typically unobtainable without supplementation throughout the months of September and October.
“As a consequence, producers run the risk of protein not being fully utilised for animal performance and production, and instead going to waste in urine, faeces”warns Dr Bond.
Rumenco’s SUGARMAXX low moisture, controlled intake lick offers the perfect feeding solution for both cattle and grazing autumn pastures this season. Containing up to double the sugar of standard energy licks, the little and controlled intake of concentrated sugars (50%) provides a rumen-friendly method of supplying extra fermentable energy without causing digestive upsets, this helps with the utilisation of protein-rich pastures.
SUGARMAXX is packed with minerals, vitamins and trace elements to help offset any potential deficiencies found in grazing. With no added copper it is suitable for both cattle and sheep. The inclusion of Rumenco’s unique blend of natural plant extracts and fermentation products, Phytotec also provides added support for optimal rumen health to support feed intake, digestion and animal performance.
“Autumn provides the last opportunity for cattle and sheep producers to utilize good grazing. Given the continued emphasis on minimising expensive bought-in concentrates, ensuring nutrient-rich pastures are utilized to their full potential is the best option” Dr Bond notes.
“Achieve improved utilisation of protein rich grazing and maximise performance this autumn by adding the vital sugars - Make SUGARMAXX
your first choice this autumn.”