Cost Saving SPECIAL EDITION for a tough year

From rumen to slurry, saving you money

The chances are you know how a cow’s rumen works:

  Food goes in the front end.

  Rumen bacteria and other microbes create their own nutrient supply by breaking down fibre and rumen degradeable protein (RDP)

  Bugs multiply in their trillions, then are moved along the digestive tract…

  …where they die off, are broken down by digestive enzymes…

  …and become a nutrient supply, absorbed into the cow’s bloodstream.

Cost Saving Special no 1:

With a few adaptations, these same principles applied to slurry can boost its plant food value and help you make big reductions in fertiliser costs.

  …reducing crust formation and smell, as well as boosting fertiliser value.

  *For automated daily dosing, a SlurryBugs AutoSystem is available, fully serviced and supported by our farm support team.

PS For serious crust problems, blocked channels or immovable sludge in lagoons, channels or below ground stores, an ultra-strength version called ‘Shift It’ is proving popular. 

Nouble-yolk delight: Deal of the decade on silage inoculant

With fingers crossed, a decent autumn for grass growth will offer positive prospects for topping up forage stocks. Clearly, this makes the quality of any autumn silage more important than usual.

Proven over a wide range of dry matters from high teens to forties, OptiSile Extra’s three concentrated bacterial strains promote rapid preservation in the clamp and STAYCOOL stability when feeding out. Clearly, both actions together preserve energy where you need it, in the silage.

We make OptiSile silage inoculants here at our UFAS approved site.

Cost Saving Special no 2:

In view of how this exceptional summer will affect you over the coming months, we have created a once-in-a-decade double-yolker autumn deal. This does indeed apply to dairy farmers, not poultry farmers as the name might suggest.

Why double yolker? To match the delight we surely all get on finding one amid our breakfast platter, and because the deal has two components.

No detail too small if it makes better silage inoculant

A customer mentioned recently how easily OptiSile dissolves compared with some other inoculants. This is down to using a high quality – and certainly not the cheapest – carrier material with exceptionally high solubility.

Cost Saving Special no 3:

This gives some practical upshots, each of which could save you a little money: 

1) No tiny particles suspended in diluted additive to damage pumps or nozzles, or reduce application accuracy.

2) No time delays from emptying undissolved gravel from the bottom of additive drums on the tractor or forager. 

3) Better suited to low volume application. 

Sick of paying even more for straw?

Versatile option for cubicles (all bases) and loose housing

In previous issues of this Livestock Farming Matters series, we’ve banged on aplenty about the merits of dried paper pulp with kiln dried sawdust as a surface dressing for cubicles: Ultra-dry and absorbent, comfy and affordable.

But until very recently, EnviroBed has only been an option for farms with under cover storage and access for bulk deliveries.

Cost Saving Special no 4:

Compared with straw and other materials like sawdust, the cost savings of EnviroBed are now open to many farms previously excluded. Now, deliveries in shrink-wrapped palletised tote bags are available. Currently, capacity is increasing but not unlimited, so first-come, first-served applies.

Small scale users can buy as little as one at a time. Full loads are available on various sizes of flat bed truck or artic trailers. Please call the Farm Support Team about pricing and lead times.

Cost Saving Special no 5:

For loose housing, smaller deliveries open up EnviroBed to farmers with all types of livestock. Same as no 4, this offers cost savings against many other bedding materials.

With thanks to customers who’ve pioneered the best way to apply in loose housing, our Farm Support Team now has reliable feedback from farmers based on every farm being different. To find out the best solution for your farm, all you have to do is ask.

Seeking answers to ammonia emissions that SAVE you money

We are all in the hands of Defra regarding new measures for reducing ammonia emissions from farms – and largely livestock manures. The Defra Clean Air Strategy 2018 suggests capital intensive but potentially impractical measures such as compulsory covers for all slurry and manure stores by 2027. It is possible that the gases will simply collect under the cover, then be released by stirring and/or spreading.

In the draft form for public consultation, there was no mention of the potential for microbiological answers to our national ammonia problem.

In the consultation itself; directly with the people involved at Defra and other agencies; and indirectly via farmers’ organisations and relevant industry bodies; we have been lobbying for applied microbiology to get a look in.

This legislation will affect dairy farms and we want you to have low cost options that work well and are sustainably beneficial instead of potentially high cost capital investments that may not…which brings us back to Cost Saving Special no 1 on page 1.

Protecting your investment in maize even more important this year

In any year, maize is a high cost crop to grow and a high value crop in the clamp. This year, of course, this is even more the case than usual.

It is the high starch content that makes up a lot of that high value, but also makes it prone to heating at the open clamp face and feed trough. Clearly, preventing it heating up will protect feed value and reduce the amount of feed energy you need to buy in.

Cost Saving Special no 6:

Take advantage of an autumn deal on OptiSile Maize, the only three-strain-STAYCOOL inoculant available. One strain takes care of the lactic acid fermentation going into the clamp. The other two protect what’s in there by generating a different acid, acetic, which does what lactic cannot: Inhibit spoilage organisms including moulds, fungi and Clostridia that promote heating up and can also cause ill health. 

For more information call Envirosystems on 01772 860085.

Top tip, farmer to farmer:

“When disbudding calves, apply EnviroCare Hoof Gel to the site instead of a just-in-case shot of antibiotic.”