Gerry Giggins: there is a great opportunity for a specialist feed producers

  • Gerry Giggins: there is a great opportunity for a specialist feed producers
    FarmIreland.t. E.
    Since my article last month, most of my time was spent keeping budgets winter feed. In many cases, the lack of forage from 30pcs-70pc. These deficiencies will lead to financial and mental burden for many farmers and farm families.
    https://www.independent.ie/business/farming/tillage/gerry-giggins-big-opportunity-arises-for-specialist-fodder-producers-37256659.html
    https://www.independent.ie/business/article37258613.ece/3550b/AUTOCROP/h342/2018-02-01_bus_38162284_I1.JPG

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Since my article last month, most of my time was spent keeping budgets winter feed. In many cases, the lack of forage from 30pcs-70pc. These deficiencies will lead to financial and mental burden for many farmers and farm families.

While I’ve spoken at numerous winter events feeding over the last few weeks, it was great to be accompanied by in most cases, the speakers addressing the mental and physical well-being in difficult times.

I firmly believe in the principle of a shared problem is half problem. After completing a feed budgets and working with the farmer to put in place a winter meal plan, I was witness to strain and worry, while being easier having a plan in place.

The recent rain and acquisitions in the growth of grass was widely welcomed. A lot of silage ground is now returned to the field for harvest now and in the coming weeks. Catch crops and short leys that were sown after an early winter is going well. There appears to have been more of the areas of leys short-term compared to catch crops.

Many tillage farmers have installed these high-yielding, short grasses (sun & Westerwolds) with the intention of trading food for neighboring farmers livestock. In the case of some highly advanced cultures, grazing and mowing will be possible in the near future.

The ability to allow crops such as these to grow another few weeks and to take a significant cut of silage before grazing after growth in the winter too. When cutting these grasses for silage in the fall, it is important to be aware of the problems associated with the nature of crops and time of year.

These herbs can be low in dry matter content, high content of leaves, low in fiber and possibly high nitrogen content. Westerwold grass has a lower sugar content than the sun, which may represent another challenge for silage.

Given the time of year, the increase in dry matter and sugar content of the grass through wilting will be difficult. Mowing, tedding, raking and gathering can lead to soil contamination, especially if the weather conditions are difficult.

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Livestock and dairy farms across Northern Europe pay sky-high prices for wheat straw is used in food and bedding for livestock, as hot, dry weather in the region, reduces the yield.

For these reasons, it is strongly recommended to use appropriate additives. In late spring, before the land returns cereals, vegetables, corn or root crop, use some high quality grass silage can be made.

With better ground conditions and more sunlight, the problems that arose in the fall will be significantly reduced. This system of short-term grass leys, rose in the period between the winter grain harvest was collected and spring cereal or root crop time, ensure the growth of the national fodder reserves.

When perennial grasses are sown immediately after harvest of grain harvested, they are capable of producing up to 5-6 tonnes of dry matter per hectare until the following spring.

Where catch crops such as Kale and fodder rape were grown, the only real option is to graze these crops. I have personal experience of trying bale of these crops, with very negative results.

The physical characteristics of both plants, high leaf substance thick stem, low sugar and low dry matter at ensiling to accept as food is very difficult. In addition to these factors, the harvest will only meet the maturity and full yield in the middle of winter means ensiling very impractical.

Having started his working career in the Netherlands, about 40 years ago, in practice, the expert produces the food was good.

Given the specialisation of many farmers in recent decades, perhaps there is an opportunity for those in the tillage sector to consider this route.

Gerry Giggins is an animal nutritionist based in Co Louth

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