October 2010 Newsletter

This months linked article's:


The value of your maize silage has moved dramatically over the last few months following the changes in the cereal markets.

Standing crops have changed hands at up to £600 / acre in some areas depending on availability and distance, up to 50% more than last season. Those fortunate to have enough of their own crop, need to reflect that the maize you are about to chop has probably never cost you more to grow and is worth £140-£150/tonne of Dry Matter.

Early reports from further south suggest that some crops are coming off lighter than the height or inspection had indicated, particularly where there had been earlier patches which seemed to have grown away, but in reality are producing thinner stems and smaller cobs. Last years generally bumper crop resulted in carryover and lower plantings on many farms so with lighter maize this year following the poor grass season, for many of you winter forage stocks maybe in the balance.

Did you realise that according to published data, maize silage from field to feed typically loses approx. 20% of its dry matter a lot more than grass. So in other words of that 50 acres you are about to harvest only 40 will find its way in front of the cows.

You can plan to effectively cut this loss in half by:

  • Heavy rolling in thin layers plus effective sealing and consistent top weight.
  • Treat the silage with an additive based on a chemical preservative. We recommend Ecocorn.
  • Use Clampfilm under the standard black plastic

GP for Great Products


Should you be investing in an additive for your maize silage?

Are You Still Unsure Which Product To Choose?

Start With A Very Simple Question You Need To Answer?

Is significant reduction of heating, energy loss and waste, best achieved by treating maize with a bacterial additive or is a chemical preservative more likely to produce a reliable, consistent result???

The independent work including recent research from MGA and Kingshay shows that chemical preservative treatments, keep the silage cooler for longer and the effects are more consistent than bacterial treatments. Now make your choice!!!

Ecocorn is based on the most commonly used chemical food preservative Potassium Sorbate.

As you consider your options weather to us Ecocorn or not, there are 2 facts to take on board.

1. The Typical Dry Matter Loss from the maize silage process (from field to cow) is recognised as being at least 20%. These losses at 32% Dry Matter can be represented as follows

2. Recent figures put the value of maize in a ration at around £100/tonne of Dry Matter


  • Fill clamp with long ramp in thin layers
  • Roll continuously… no dual wheels
  • Only lengthen chop under 30% DM
  • With a late crop, chop under 1cm
  • Fill in one day or sheet at night
  • Apply Ecocorn with a focus on the top half
  • Use double top and enveloped side sheet
  • Use New Clamp Film under the black plastic
  • Top weight must be consistant

Ecocorn Treatment … The Facts and Figures from Independent Trials

  • You can reduce typical Energy Losses from £90 down to £45/acre so saving £45 /acre
  • You can increase Milk Yield By £90/acre (assuming: 8t/acre:25p/L:50/50maize,grass)
  • Cost of treatment £26/acre so a 5:1 return after product cost can be achieved

So give us a call on 01948 661602 for Ecocorn, Clampfilm or just for good advice.




Select 18 Nuts

A highly cost effective range, which has sold very well through last winter. We now have two summer rations following on from last winters' successful launch. Contains: Wheat, Barley, Wheatfeed, Palm Kernal, Soya Hulls, Sunflower, Rapemeal, Molasses, Mins & Vits, Vegetable Fat.

Enhance 18 Nuts

Very high in energy and quality proteins, with good digestible fibre sources readily available. Contains: Wheat, Wheatfeed, Palm Kernal, Soya Hulls, Wheat Distillers, Sunflower, Rapemeal, Biscuitmeal, Molasses, Mins & Vits, Sopralin and Megalac.

Supreme HDF 18 Nuts

To be fed where a good fibre source is required. Excellent energy levels. Contains: Hipro Soya, Sugarbeet, Wheat, Rapemeal, Maize Distillers, Maize, Sunflower, Citrus, Palm Kernal, Molasses, Megalac, Mins & Vits and Vegetable Fat.

Excel 18 Nuts

Top quality ingredients blended together for cows with yields in excess of 7,000 litres. Contains: Wheat, Hipro Soya, Sugarbeet, Biscuitmeal, Rapemeal, Maize Distillers, Maize, Palm Kernal, Molasses, Sopralin, Megalac, Mins & Vits and Vegetables Fat.

All the above rations are also available in 20% & 22% Nuts or Blend form.

Dairy 10,000 Litre Nuts

The 'Rolls Royce' of our range. A specialist product for high yielding cows in excess of 8,000 litres. This product has been proved time and time again to increase milk production. There is no equal! Contains: Wheat, Maize, Palm Kernal, Wheat Distillers, Hipro Soya, Sugarbeet, Biscuitmeal, Molasses, Mins & Vits, Sopralin, Megalac and Vegetable Fat.


Coarse calf 16 Mixture

For feeding to all calves from 3 days of age to 10-12 weeks. Includes flaked peas and flaked maize for maximum digestibility. Contains: Barley, Hipro Soya, Sugarbeet, Molasses, Mins & Vits, Sopralin, Flaked Maize, Oatfeed, Flaked Peas, 30% Protein Pellet.

Calf Starter Pellets

For feeding to all calves from 3 days of age to 10-12 weeks.
Contains: Wheat, Wheatfeed, Palm Kernal, Soya Hulls, Maize Distillers, Rapemeal, Sugarbeet, Citrus, Molasses, Mins & Vits and Vegetable Fat.

GPF Heifer Nuts

For heifer replacements on silage systems where good growth is required from 12 weeks to calving. Contains: Wheat, Sugarbeet, Rapemeal, Biscuitmeal, Palm Kernal, Wheatfeed, Sunflower, Molasses, Mins & Vits and Vegetable Fat.



GPF Beef 16 Nuts

From 12 weeks to slaughter on all beef systems for maximum growth. Contains: Wheat, Rape Meal, Wheatfeed, Soya Hulls, Palm Kernel, Molasses, Sunflower, Supagold Biscuit Meal, Sugarbeet, Min/Vits, Vegetable Fat.

Intensive 14% Beef Blend

Course blend designed to fed with forage of your choice to all types of beef animals. Contains: Wheat, Barley, Sugarbeet, Citrus, Soya Hulls, Wheatfeed, Molasses, Mins & Vits, Oatfeed and 30% Protein Pellet.

18% Beef Blend

Course blend designed to be mixed with on farm cereals for all types of beef cattle. Contains: Sugarbeet, Wheat Distillers, Rapemeal, Citrus, Soya Hulls, Palm Kernal, Wheatfeed, Molasses and Mins & Vits.


1. Far off Dry Cows

This does not mean out of sight! Don't keep these cows out unless a long way off calving. Provide minerals and vitamins and some form of starch in the diet.

2. Close up Dry Cows

Get onto winter diets containing forages such as Maize and Wholecrop. Use EXCEL DRY COW ROLLS or EXCEL DRY COW MINERALS. Does your dry cow product provide 1000 iu Vit E per day? - Ours does!

3. Autumn Calvers

Damage is being done to autumn calvers having been kept out on lush grass too long. When these cows are housed their performance has been disappointing. Monitoring intakes shows that they are eating 2kg DM per day less than they should be.

4. Housing

Have adequate housing. If cubicle space is short, cows will cut down their eating time to ensure they get sufficient rest, i.e. 12 - 14 hours per day rest time is needed for high yielders, 2 litres per day can be lost if cows don't have sufficient rest.

5. Maize Silage

Maize silages have been chopped too short by some contractors in the past. Put a handful in a water trough and see how much is floating after 30 seconds. That left floating is the effective rumen fibre (that left at the bottom of the trough is not being used effectively). Early indications are that maize is low in protein this year so check out the diet for balanced protein. Give the office a ring if you want to have your diet checked out.

6. Feet

Keep on top of feet problems, you don't notice lame cows when out at grass. Have a look at locomotion scores (how she walks) and foot shape. Foot bathing is helpful to reduce the risk of digital dermatitis. Copper Sulphate and formulin are a good choice at this time.

7. Vitamins and Minerals

Check out vitamins and mineral requirements to complement your forages and base mix.

Does your milking cow mineral contain over 3,500 iu Vit E per kg? If not give us a ring, because ours does!


  • Trying to slim dry cows in the dry period
  • Low quality forage
  • Poor cow comfort
  • Roughing" it approach
  • Low vitamins and minerals
  • Mouldy feeds
  • One dry group
  • Wrong diet formulation
  • The use of milking cow minerals in a dry cow diet.

How did you score?


Two groups of dry cows with the far off dry cows fed at least a minimum of a high specification mineral tub and some starchy forage as well as ad-lib straw. All cows and heifers to have at least 21 days on a transition diet. Cows should have a body condition score of between 2.5 to 3.0. Thinner cows should be on a transition diet for longer.

Diets should contain similar forages to those fed post calving and either blend or EXCEL DRY COW ROLLS. A high specification mineral should be fed. Our EXCEL DRY COW MINERAL covers all your mineral and vitamin requirements.

This transition diet should be formulated by a competent nutritionist to check it meets the modern cows requirement.

Remember comfort is paramount. Would you let a pregnant woman sleep on a concrete floor? Pay attention to these cows and mastitis, lameness and infertility will be reduced.

Pay back is at least 2ppl!


Now that herds are getting settled into their winter regime and feeding patterns, perhaps it is time to check that your feeding programme is correct. If your answer is 'YES' to the following ten questions you would appear to have it right. If however your answers are not all 'YES' maybe your feed programme needs some fine tuning.

  1. Are your freshly calved cows peaking to your expectations?
  2. Is overall milk production satisfactory?
  3. Are your cows in good condition or are they losing weight?
  4. Are they bulling correctly?
  5. Are the P.D. percentages correct or have you too many not in calf?
  6. Is milk quality satisfactory?
  7. Are your cows eating sufficient silage?
  8. Are you experiencing cow health problems such as milk fever?
  9. Is the percentage of lame cows too high?
  10. Are your dry cows calving down as you would wish?

If any of these questions are ringing alarm bells in your own farm situation please don't hesitate to ring us. We are confident that with our many years experience in all aspects of cow feeding and nutrition we can work with you to sort out the problem to enable you to get the best financial returns.


A variety of selected quality energy sources to meet the cows' nutritional requirements in the dry period. High energy levels compared to other dry cow rolls. Specific proteins to enhance the wide range of amino acids that are essential during the dry period and early lactation. A mineral specification designed for the modern dairy cow as health is of paramount importance. An easy to feed palatable roll with flexible feeding options...


Dispersal of the Luggford Herd

On Thursday 14th October 2010
at Church House Farm, Moreton-on-Lugg
Hereford, HR4 8DE.

Comprising of 100 cows and heifers in/or in calf,
10 in calf heifers, 15 bulling heifers and 25 heifer calves.

Further details will be available from Gwilym Richards at
The Estate Office,Pant Glas,Llanishen, Chepstow. NP16 6QQ
Tel: 01600 860 300 or email: gr@grichards.co.uk

We are pleased to of supplied compound feed, blends, straights and our own unique fat CS Plus, to Alison Adams for her 'Luggford' herd at C Perkins & Son for the past 10 years. During this time consistency of products has been the key, which has lead to a 22% increase of milk yield for the herd, to give a lactating average of 8,670 litres.




Gareth or Rachel (Office)
01948 661602 Fax 01948 871776