This months linked article's:









Are you ready to get maximum litres from forage.

Although milk prices are significantly better than they were, the ongoing rise in the price of feed ingredients are eating into the profits. As we reported last month the current world wide situation with all feed ingredients seems to indicate continued price rises.

If prices continue to rise at their current levels, serious thought will have to be given to even better utilisation of forages in an effort to produce milk, beef or lamb more economically. For example if you can reduce your average feed rate (kgs) per litre of milk produced by 0.02 kgs (e.g. from 0.32 to 0.30 kgs/litre), by increasing forage intake, you will save around £50 worth of milk value per cow in the herd. For a herd of 180 cows this would mean potential additional income of £9,000 per annum.

Fine in principle you may think but these savings might not be as far out of reach as they seem. By paying attention to some key issues it is possible to make a real difference. These include:

  • Regular and precise review of feed rationing / forage balancing / calibration of feeders
  • Review how much is being fed to low yielders / stale cows
  • Review management of dry cows
  • Review cow comfort and health - especially overcrowding - comfy cows equals extra litres!
  • Review TMR diets to avoid particle selection and maximise intake potential

Along with these reviews, the management of your forage crops in the field and clamp is just as important. Consider the following:

  • Choose the correct grass mixtures and maize varieties to suit your land.
  • Review fertiliser applications to maximise yields.
  • Consider harvesting at the best possible time and in the best possible conditions (be extra nice to your contractor if you have one!).
  • Consider the use of silage additive to increase outputs of milk or beef (choosing the right one really can pay dividends!).
  • Ensure best possible clamping of forages to minimise contamination and wastage.
  • Ensure correct chop length of grass and maize to minimise soil contamination and maximise intakes.

By taking a little bit of time to fine tune some of your farm management systems, you may well be able to reduce overall feed rates and utilise your forages better so leading to better profit margins.

Some of the latest research into total farm costs from one of the leading agricultural bodies shows that the average total cost per litre of milk produced will have increased by almost 4p per litre in the year ending March 2008. Projected costs to March 2009 show a further increase over the next twelve months of over 3p a litre to an average of 28.39p per litre. It is fairly obvious that not only the price of milk must be maintained and increased to maintain margins, but more milk must be produced from your own forages to try to offset some of these cost increases.

For further information please ring the office on 01948 661602.


It's that time of year when spring is just around the corner. As we are all aware spring grass is great for producing milk, full of nutrients and very palatable but it lacks digestible fibre. At best spring grass can only produce 25 litres of milk, any extra litres will only come of the cows body reserves resulting in:

  • Loss of weight
  • Poor health
  • Poor fertility

Here at GP Feeds we can help you to plan your spring and summer rations so that you get the best from your cows during this time. Feed costs as you are aware are already high - this looks set to continue for the time being. We recommend you look at contracting your spring and summer requirements sooner rather than later to get the best deal for you.

Remember - at GP Feeds what you book at the beginning of a contract you get till the end. We don't change things unless you ask. We have many tried and tested rations, some of which remain the same as when they were created some years ago - we don't have fancy new names each season, we believe in our rations and believe in the continuity we provide.

Remember - GP Feeds don't change things unless YOU ASK us to!


There are many fats on the market today which all claim to benefit the modern dairy cow. The question is - which one is right for you?

Fat prices in general are an ever moving market, Megalac alone has gone up £30 this month, with more rises expected. Here at GP Feeds we have a number of fats available, details of which are below. We choose to sell only the best available on today's market. For up to date prices contact the office on 01948 661602. Special offer on CS+ - buy now before price rises and tonnages run out.

Product Name Analysis * Recommended usage rate * Benefits / Comments
CS Plus

(Exclusive to GP Feeds)

MJ / kg

69 - 75% C16

300 - 500g
per cow per day
  • Ideal for use with spring grass
  • Maximises butterfats
  • Sustains milk yields
  • Maintains the cows body condition
  • Promotes optimal liver function
  • Can be added to blends, compounds and TMR diets
Megalac 33.25
MJ / kg
500 - 750g
per cow per day
  • Increases milk yield
  • Reduces the risk of acidosis
  • Improves fertility
  • Can be added to blends, compounds and TMR diets
Optilac 23
MJ / kg
per cow per day
  • Provides energy in highly digestible form
  • Improves milk yield and fertility
  • Cost effective alternative to other calcium soaps
  • Can be added to blends, compounds and TMR diets
Dynalac 25.5
MJ / kg
500 - 1000g
per cow per day
  • Helps to improve butterfat levels
  • Boosts fertility

* Details as per manufacturers literature

Call GP Feeds on 01948 661602 to place your orders today!


Are you considering turnout? It is worth reminding you that magnesium will be an important and necessary supplement. Remember dairy cows do not store magnesium, so it is important to start feeding higher levels around 10 days before turnout. This can be done in a variety of ways:

  • Having higher levels incorporated into your compound feed or blend
  • Change to high magnesium mineral
  • Have your custom mineral magnesium level increased
  • Add magnesium chloride to the water system
  • Add Calcined Magnesite to the buffer ration

The modern dairy cow will require the equivalent of at least 25 grams of pure magnesium (or 50 grams of Cal Mag). Here at GP Feeds we increase the levels of magnesium in our compounds as standard ready for the spring.

So, speak to the office or your local agent to determine the best way to meet your cow's needs, we can customise your mineral products to any specific need, and remember that all of the above mentioned options are available through GP Feeds.

Speak to us about our special offer on Magnesium Minerals


One of the best known and respected of all silage preservatives, Add-F, is now available in a non-corrosive formula from us, called Add-F NC (for non-corrosive) more...


We understand that for many of you moving compound suppliers is often a difficult decision for many reasons. We believe in all our rations but none more so than our Youngstock range. It is worth remembering that the foundation of any good quality yielding herd, is only as good as the youngstock you replace into it. It is vital that your herd's next generation is fed correctly in order to be an asset to your business.


We have many buying group members who use our Youngstock products. So why not call the office and give us a try. What do you have to lose?


With the soaring price of wheat and other home grown cereals has led to the appearence of imported cereals including maize and Sorghum on the UK market. Sorghum can be usefully included in least cost ration to help with increasing feed costs. The US is the 2nd biggest exporter of sorghum next to africa and the origin of much of the material available in the UK. Different classes of sorghum can give big differences in quality.

Sorghum has a similar nutrient profile to maize, being lower in protein and lysine and higher in energy compared with wheat or barley.

Certain varieties of sorghum contain high levels of tannins which have anti-nutritive properties. These can reduce feed conversation effciency. The presence of tannin is genetic and most US grown sorghum is the low-tannin variety. Exported US material should be tannin free, where as South American and African varieties are more likely to contain high levels of tannins.

With the above in mind it is always wise to watch your declartion tickets to ensure you are getting what you've asked for. Here at GP Feeds we only use 14 bulk raw materials to create our compounds and blends. These are:

Sunflower, Barley, Citrus / Sugarbeet (depending on availabiity), Maize Distillers, Maize, Palm Kernal, Molasses, Rapemeal, Biscuitmeal, Hipro Soya, Soya Hulls, Wheat, Scottish Wheat Distillers, Wheatfeed.

So if you want quality products for quality production there is only one call you need to make and thats to us on 01948 661602.

EASTER ORDERS (21st - 24th March)

Easter reminder - Can we please ask that orders required for week commencing 17th March are booked with the office no later than Friday 14th March and orders required for week commencing 24th March are booked with the office no later than Wednesday 19th March.


  1. Coarse Calf Mix - the 'Rolls Royce' of calf rations. This is where quality really counts. You don't have to believe us just ask the buying group members
  2. Fats - check the table on this page to see which is best for your needs, and place your orders before prices rise again. Special offers available on CS+ - call the office today to place your order!
  3. GP Feeds Minerals - A must for all diets. We have seen outstanding results by supplementing minerals of the right quality and quantity. Don't buy your usual minerals until you have spoken to GP Feeds. Don't forget to ask us about High Magnesium minerals.
  4. Excel Pre Calver Rolls - You've fed the rest now feed the best! When fed at 2.5kg per cow per day, they will supply all the necessary protein, energy and minerals she needs all in one package.
  5. Wet Feeds - Brewers Grains and Supergrains - call the office to check the latest prices and availability. It is also worth considering booking your tonnage requirements for pitting with silage as demand is high.



Gareth or Rachel (Office)
01948 661602 Fax 01948 871776