Feed Department Notes - March 2016
Tuesday, March 29, 2016
Laura Horejsi

As many of you know, January 1, 2017 will be a big change for producers when it comes to the use of antibiotics in livestock. The drugs will be split into two categories, either medically important or non-medically important. All medically important drugs will require a vet certificate before we can mix them in the feed. Some of the drugs for hog feed would include: aureomycin, terramycin, lincomix, neo-terra, stafac, tylan, pulmotil, and c.s.p. 250. On the cattle side they would include terramycin, chloratetracycline, and A.S.700. CTC and OTC will no longer be able to be used for treating foot rot. On the non-medically important drug side there are some that will still be able to be used without a VFD whuch include: albac, BMD, denegard, flavomycin, mecadox, and skysis. Denagard/CTC combination cannot be used without a VFD. Basically, all water soluable and injectable drugs will need a VFD except for BMD and denegard. As you can see, this can be very confusing so we are planning on having meetings later in the year to go over final rulings on what can be used.

Again this year we’ll be offering a pelleted creep feed for calves. It will be a mini pellet to help cut back on fines. It will be available with either bovatec or deccox. I would recommend starting the calves out on a texturized product and gradually switching them over to the pellet. The prices on feeder cattle have come down but there is still a good return on investment to creep feed, plus the calves start on feed in the feedlot a lot better and it helps stretch out the pasture. Remember to keep the tubs and mineral in front of the cows to help with cleaning and breeding back.

We have customers looking for people to build hog barns and custom feed for them. With the prices of barns going up, it takes longer to get them paid off but they are a good way to build up equity, plus the value of the manure is good. The feed and grain departments will sponsor a marketing meeting on March 30th with a representative from F.C. Stone as the speaker. Also on March 28th we’re having a calf grower meeting to discuss milk replacers, calf starters and management practices. We’ll send a notification to everyone as we get closer to the dates.

A topic of discussion from hog producers is the fineness of feed for feed conversion. Reducing the particle size of grains increases the surface area of the grain for enzymatic action, thereby increasing the digestability of energy and other nutrients in the grain. Kansas State research shows that there is an advantage to keep the particle size of the corn under 600 microns. The micron size on our corn usually runs from 475 to 540 microns. Sometimes the feed looks coarse because of the other ingredients such as distillers grains, soybean meal, and bakery by-product. This doesn’t make any difference as long as the corn is fine. The bottom line is that grinding corn to a smaller particle size increases the amount of energy available from the corn which reduces the amount of added fat needed in the diet which reduces diet costs. Flowabilty and ulcers in the pigs can be a problem with fine ground corn by itself, but with the addition of the other ingedients this should be fine.

Remember to support and thank our cattle producers in May, and our dairy producers in June for all they do in providing us with good tasting and the safest products in the world. Here’s hoping everyone has a good Easter and a great spring planting season. As always if there are any questions or concerns, please contact me on my direct line @ 507-485-3191 or cell phone @ 605-690-5693.

Tom Staniszewski
Feed department manager

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