MANKATO, Minn. – With volatile feed costs, it is an increasing challenge for producers to manage their bottom line. Selecting the right ingredients has always been essential in providing animals with proper nutrition. Now, making the correct ingredient decisions is even more critical for operations to stay as efficient as possible. By making well-informed ingredient decisions, producers are able to keep their animals healthy and garner more dollars down the road.
Dan Schimek, a nutritionist with Hubbard Feeds, offers the following guidelines to help producers make educated decisions when selecting feed ingredients.
Consult your nutritionist to design a program that fits your operation. Each herd has unique nutritional requirements and a nutritionist can tailor fit a program to progress towards your operational goals.
Look at feeds as nutrients rather than feeds. For example, look at replacing protein sources rather than replacing soybean meal with distillers grains. An alternative diet can be effective as long as the nutrients are meeting the livestock’s requirement.
Build your nutrition program around your homegrown feeds. By utilizing these low cost sources, the total feed cost is lowered.
Take advantage of byproduct feeds available from ethanol, sugar, brewing, canning industries and other sources. Some of these byproducts include distillers grains, brewers grain and beet pulp.
Be sure to consider the location of the plant and feed mill to avoid high transportation costs. This becomes especially important when wet feeds are being considered.
Building relationships are key to finding the best value on feed. Some of the best people to know are plant personnel and independent trucking companies who are hired to remove feed from plants and often sell it for a discounted rate.
When opportunity allows, go directly to the plant to attain discounts for purchasing larger quantities.
During colder months, wet feeds have an extended shelf life in the freezer-like conditions. Smaller operations are able to enhance their use of these feeds during this time.
Hubbard Feeds Inc., based in Mankato, Minn., is a leader in animal nutrition, dedicated to providing innovative feed products. Hubbard specializes in providing nutritional expertise and high quality service to help producers be more successful. Hubbard was the first major U.S. feed manufacturer to be ISO 9001 registered and HACCP certified, the international standards for feed quality management and food safety. For additional information about Hubbard Feeds, visit www.hubbardfeeds.com.
For more information, please contact:
Ruminant Products Manager
Hubbard Feeds Inc.
Broadhead + Co
©2008 Hubbard Feeds Inc. All rights reserved.
Hubbard Feeds Inc. • 424 N. Riverfront Drive • Mankato, MN 56002
507-388-9400 • www.hubbardfeeds.com