It is safe to say that 2018 will go down as one of the most challenging years for farmers across the country. Thankfully, we have reached a point where most farmers are now coming out the other side with favourable conditions over the last few weeks delivering much needed grass and maize silage which will significantly reduce the fodder deficit on farms.
Unfortunately, the one dilemma that has not disappeared is the shortage of straw. Rumen health is where straw has its biggest benefit as it is one of the most effective sources of structural fibre. Currently, round bales of straw are trading at around €30 each, with no sign of this reducing anytime soon. This exorbitant price means that straw is no longer a viable option for farmers. Peat is becoming a more economical bedding option for farmers; however, many will find it impossible to get a return on its inclusion in animal diets as it continues to command a value of circa €200 per tonne. To further complicate the situation, the high fibre ration sources are extremely expensive with straights such as Soya Hulls and Beet Pulp priced at an all- time high.
If we compare an animal’s diet to a human’s diet, we all know that an over-supply of sugary foods and not enough fibre will cause a stomach imbalance that will make us feel unwell and less inclined to consume full portions. Our quick fix solution is to reach for indigestion or heartburn tablets. This approach has parallels in the ruminant animal; however, instead farmers are encouraged to reach for rumen buffers as they work on the principal of neutralising rumen acidity and promoting rumen protozoa populations.
Rumicare from Agritech has been developed to help counteract rumen and intestinal acidity and to promote adequate rumen protozoa populations in intensively fed animals and those consuming lower fibre diets. Rumicare Beef and Dairy is formulated using a unique combination of phased release rumen buffering minerals. Phased release technology ensures a constant and ongoing fight against Sub Acute Rumen Acidosis (SARA). Added Rumigest® yeast will further enhance rumen bacteria populations and activity aiding better digestion of starch and cellulose.
Agritech’s Sales Director John Kenny says “we see Rumicare as providing real solutions for Irish farmers this winter as it will significantly lower the requirement for straw, leaving more room for quality feed. Our Agritech sales team are available to provide on farm nutritional support as well as a free of charge dietary recommendation and feed plan this winter if required.”
For further assistance or advice do not hesitate to contact your local Agritech distributor.