The best of both worlds

Feed efficiency has become a top priority for most producers, particularly recently with the drop in milk prices meaning that now, more than ever, everything on the order sheet must earn its place. A new product to the ForFarmers portfolio does just that by bringing together the feed efficiency boosting benefits of two existing products for the price of one.

Dairy Nutrition
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“Our Microbalance RumiBuff SC brings all the benefits of two products together in a cost-effective package,” says technical manager Philip Ambler.

MegaBuff stabilises rumen pH, helping it to work at its best,” he explains. “It helps to reduce acid loading and therefore enables the animal to get the most out of its feed. Levucell meanwhile is an active yeast-based product. Adding it to the diet helps to create the best conditions in the rumen and it works particularly well when the pH of the rumen is already close to optimal so when paired with MegaBuff it is a powerful combination.”

Additionally, RumiBuff SC also supplies bio-available minerals and trace elements, anti-oxidants and vitamins. These help to condition the rumen microbes for increased dry matter intake and improved performance. The results are milk fat and protein improvements as a result of better fibre digestion in the rumen and more energy made available to the cow.

Yeasts have some effect on rumen pH, but that’s not their main function, Bruce says. “By mopping up excess oxygen in the rumen, reducing populations of detrimental microbes and encouraging those responsible for fibre digestion, yeasts will help maximise production from the ration and the buffer will work in harmony with this.”

Microbalance RumiBuff SC is particularly useful to the heat stressed cow, he continues. “Cows with a more stable rumen and already in a good place are the most susceptible to heat stress. Their rumen is already well balanced so is at higher risk from any drops in pH. Microbalance RumiBuff SC can help counteract that while also encouraging feed intakes.”

Combining the two products also brings practical benefits of not needing two pallets on the farm, but more importantly it cuts out some of the potential for inaccuracy of feeding. “Combining the two products effectively halves the risk of feeding inaccuracy, which is particularly important. Feeding inaccurately or inconsistently is not only a potential missed opportunity for the cow to get the true benefits from a product, it may also mean the farmer is over investing, that is, spending on products that isn’t delivering the benefits it should.”

Microbalance RumiBuff SC is fed at 100g/head/day and works out less than half the price of feeding both Levucell and MegaBuff. Feeding the two together costs a farm 18p per cow per day, explains Philip, whereas RumiBuff SC costs just 7.4p per cow per day. Based on 180 cows, feeding RumiBuff SC rather than Levucell and MegaBuff would give an annual saving of £7,056.

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