Carefully guarding the rumen load
DANISH DAIRY FARMER
NorFor carefully takes into account how the different feedstuffs work together and how they affect the rummen. This is the base for composing far better feed rations.
Henrik Bjærre Jakobsen, Danish farmer, 300 Dairy cows
Knowledge made him change his feed mix
The content of sugar and starch, which is tough for the rumen, varies. He says he always thought that a lot of grass silage is the best feed for the cow's rumen, but after using NorFor, he realized that grass can sometimes be a heavy diet.
– "Grass silage that is harvested in the early season contains a lot of sugar which is tough for the cows bellies", says Henrik Bjærre Jakobsen.
This knowledge made him change his feed mix. Today he gives his cows less grass silage, and has started to give them alfalfa silage. The daily amount of alfalfa silage is 4 kg per cow and he also gives them 8 kilos of grass silage (you find more facts about the feed ration below).
– "When I started giving the herd alfalfa I learned that the cows utilize the nutritional content of the feed ration better. It all works better than before", he says. Prior he made his feed rations with his computer using a homemade spread sheet. He thinks the NorFor feed planning tool is easy to overview and he says that the consultant services have been working well. He still makes his feed rations on his own, only picking up the phone to call the consultant when necessary. – "The change has not been difficult", he says. Bjærre Jakobsen runs a feeding control every second week.
Easy to check how the herd performs
"The NorFor ration formulation is more detailed than the previous feed ration, and it is easy to check how the herd performs compared to my goals."
How high is the milk yield related to your goals, what percentage of the energy in the feed have the cows been utilizing, and how much do you have left when the feed cost is subtracted from the dairy bill, are examples of herd goals that Henrik Bjærre Jakobsen points out.
Henrik Bjærre Jakobsen runs a dairy farm 30 km west of Herning at the Danish west coast.
NAME: Henrik Bjærre Jakobsen
NUMBER OF DAIRY COWS: 300
BREED: Danish Holstein
AVERAGE MILK YIELD: 11500 ECM/cow/year
FEED RATION: (cow/day)
Grass silage: 8 kg
Maize silage: 25 kg
Alfalfa silage: 4 kg
Soya: 1,6 kg
Rapeseed cake: 3,2 kg
Wheat (or barley): 2,5 kg
Sugar beet pulp, molassed: 1,7 kg
MILKING SYSTEM: Herring bone parlour with 16 stalls.