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FEED & NUTRITION

Learn about all aspects of the dairy cow ration, from harvest to storage and balancing additives to forage supplementation.

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“You cannot manage what you do not measure.” It’s a phrase that rings true and one that every soil lab knows well. Another common message proclaims: “Soil testing doesn’t cost, it pays!”

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The Goldilocks dry cow diet was developed by the University of Illinois under the leadership of Dr. Jim Drackley and his research team.

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Mycotoxin contamination can affect even the most well-run dairy farms. It’s important for farmers to detect mycotoxins early so they can mitigate the risk to their animals and minimize any future health and production issues that could arise in the future.

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“I want to plant more alfalfa so I don’t have to fertilize as much.” If I had a nickel for every time I have heard that, I would have a lot of nickels! That statement might apply to nitrogen fertilization of alfalfa, but all other nutrients need to be applied depending on soil and/or tissue levels.

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Looking back to the 2019 forage year, it was a disaster for some dairy farms and a challenge for most. It was almost a perfect storm; several factors that could go wrong happened somewhere.

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Corn silage is the go-to homegrown forage for supplying digestible starch and fibre high-producing cows require. Often, however, shortcuts and oversights during the growing, harvest and storage processes can limit its resulting feed value.

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