Animal feed

How effective are different forms of feeding?

People sometimes wonder whether they should feed a meal, textured feed, block, or pellet to their farm animals. In truth, the answer is that the ideal kind will come down to several factors. It is possible for any form will work for you. In any given area, it is possible to come across producers that utilise every feed form successfully. All forms have advantages and disadvantages that separate them. Let’s discuss these in detail so you can see which animal feed could work for you.

Meal feeds

These products are comprised of ingredients ground to roughly the same consistency. If you have a mix with differing size particles, segregation can happen. Moreover, with some of the smaller species of animals, like goats and sheep, they might be able to pick out the ones they prefer and leave others behind, negating the formula’s balance.

Generally, ingredients here are ground “dry”. So, there is no moisture or steam going into the mix. Some have molasses in the meal mix. Although, you need to be careful. Most meals feature mineral and salt ingredients capable of absorbing moisture. Thus, adding moist ingredients can result in clumping.

One advantage of meal mixes is that there is no need to worry about making ingredients stick together. With pellets or blocks, you do. With this obstacle out of the way, you don’t have to give nutrition up for binding.

If your feed will be “salt limited”, meal mixes work wonders. The contact of salt on an animal’s tongue is the way the “limiting” operates. As a result, control meal mixes or intake is possible at lower salt inclusion levels.

Feeding meal mixes calls for you to have a kind of tub or trough at each feeding point. If you need first class animal feed products, talk to us.

Pelleted feeds

These feeds usually include the ingredients as well as molasses and steam. They go through a pelleting die to form the pellets. Steam offers an advantage over dry mixes because it breaks the outside layer of starch in the granule. This permits the microorganisms in the rumen to get to it more readily. The result is an increase in the digestibility of the feed. It could improve it by as much as 10%.

The disadvantage to using pellets is that you are forcing ingredients through a pellet die under pressure. You also need to make the pellets stick together. This calls for you to sacrifice some part of the nutrition. Pellet size will make a bit of difference as larger ones can have more abrasive substances in them. But they will need more “sticky” ingredients to hold it together if you compare to smaller pellets.

With the bigger pellets, you can feed them on the ground wherever you find your farm animals. Not needing tubs can result in cost savings too. If you reside in a very sandy or rough country though, it can be challenging to use this kind of feed.

Blocked feeds

This type of animal feed has a distinct concept of holding and mixing ingredients together in a massive block. Formulating a ration capable of sticking tightly enough together to slow intake, but leave it so soft that it allows sufficient intake, is a mix of art and science.

One con here is you need to make certain sacrifices in nutrition. To mange intake, you must add binders, salt, and other limiters. So, energy levels for blocks are lower than other mixes that don’t need a limiter.

The big advantage of blocks is that you can feed them anywhere. Livestock can eat them free choice. Since you can put them where you want, they can aid you with grazing distribution. They can do so by encouraging the animals to use parts of the pasture they would not normally.

Textured feeds

These are ones that have ingredients of differing particle sizes. However, there is a disadvantage. The smaller ruminants are capable of picking out preferred materials. Also, they leave everything else behind. This is similar to the issue with meal feeds.

The main advantage with textured feeds though is that for rations that need to hold roughage, it can be in coarse form. This is good for rumen function. Fine grinding the roughage parts of rations can result in quicker passage rates.

We have the best animal feed for you

At JS Hubbuck Ltd, we supply a myriad of products for farm animals. With them, it will be easier to keep your herds healthy. If you are interested in shopping with us, feel free to get in touch anytime.