How low starch digestibility will affect the summer milk slump

Posted on March 10, 2022 in Forage Foundations
By Wyatt Smith, Vita Plus dairy specialist Much of the Upper Midwest has noted lower-than-normal starch digestibility in this year’s corn crops. With warm weather only a few months away, we’ve started to question what impact this lower starch digestibility will have on the traditional summer milk slump. 

Feed and forage inventory management goes to new heights

Posted on March 10, 2022 in Forage Foundations
By Dr. Matt Gabler, regional business manager New technology now provides us with a safe, easy, insightful, and accurate means to evaluate and measure feed and forage inventory and management.  Unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) – often referred to as drones - aren’t just for the military to protect our freedom; they are useful tools in maximizing operations in a wide variety of applications – including forage and feed management. 

Reduce spoilage at the feedbunk

Posted on March 10, 2022 in Forage Foundations
By Dr. Michelle Chang-Der Bedrosian, Vita Plus forage products and dairy technical service Laboratory analysis of yeast counts finds the majority of silages in the Midwest are undergoing active spoilage during the spring, summer and fall months.  However, when asked, most producers say they do not have a spoilage problem.  This hidden spoilage problem can be a major source of forage shrink and can also lead to decreased milk production, intakes, animal health, and farm profitability. 

Corn silage: What happens while it sits in storage?

Posted on November 4, 2021 in Forage Foundations
“How long do we need to wait before we break into the new corn silage?” I get asked this question each fall. It is always a good idea to remember why we suggest the typical “wait periods” that we do.

16 steps to cover silage piles

Posted on August 17, 2021 in Forage Foundations

By Andy Carlson, Vita Plus dairy specialist
The final step of harvest – and one of the most critical steps – is to effectively cover and seal our bunkers and piles to limit oxygen and protect forages.  We depend on bacteria to ferment and preserve forage, and virtually all these bacteria need a low-oxygen environment to efficiently do the job.  Here are some recommendations to help you cover forages safely, efficiently and effectively.

Packing density: Choose equipment to get the job done

Posted on August 17, 2021 in Forage Foundations

By Becky Arnold, Lallemand Animal Nutrition
In the previous article in this series, we discussed the value of achieving at least 15 pounds of dry matter per cubic foot as well as managing the packing process to achieve adequate compaction.  In this article, we will discuss dual-wheel tractors, track tractors, and pull-type roller packers, and their effects on silage density.  

It won’t be a good harvest if it’s not safe

Posted on August 17, 2021 in Forage Foundations

By Kyle McLain, Vita Plus dairy specialist
Forage quality and quantity are very important for feed efficiency and profitability. However, safety trumps all of that when it comes to harvesting, storing and feeding forages. Nothing is more important than you and your employees returning safely and soundly to your families after a successful corn silage season. Here are some safety tips to consider when harvesting, storing and feeding forages.

Less shrink. Less spoilage. MORE HOMEGROWN FEED!

Posted on June 24, 2021 in Forage Foundations

One way to control costs on your dairy is to retain as much of your homegrown forages as possible.  Learn about our line of Crop-N-Rich forage inoculants and Silostop oxygen barrier plastic.

The attraction to compaction

Posted on June 7, 2021 in Forage Foundations

By Becky Arnold, Lallemand Animal Nutrition territory business manager
Packing density is the most important factor influencing silage quality once the crop has been delivered to the silo. The more densely packed, the quicker oxygen is depleted, stopping plant respiration and the rapid growth of aerobic spoilage organisms.

Grass can fit well in your forage inventories and nutrient management plan

Posted on February 22, 2021 in Forage Foundations

By Dr. Zach Sawall, Vita Plus dairy nutritionist and technical services specialist, and Pat Hoffman, Vita Plus dairy technical support specialist
“What else can we fit into our crop rotation to get more tonnage from the acres we have to work?” Italian ryegrass can be an effective forage option whether you’re looking to rescue a winterkilled alfalfa field or wanting to put up a grass forage.

2021 Wisconsin Agronomy Update: Alfalfa and alternative forages

Posted on February 22, 2021 in Forage Foundations

Kevin Jarek and Dr. Matt Akins, University of Wisconsin Extension
During this year's virtual Wisconsin Agronomy Update, University of Wisconsin extension agents provided attendees with an update on Wisconsin’s alfalfa landscape and explained how alternative forages have increased in production to make up for lost alfalfa yields.

Does fermentation change corn silage processing?

Posted on December 16, 2020 in Forage Foundations

By Dr. Luiz Ferraretto, University of Wisconsin-Madison assistant professor and extension specialist
Recent corn silage field studies have addressed whether fermentation can make up for inadequate processing at harvest.

Advancements in silo plastic coverings

Posted on December 16, 2020 in Forage Foundations

By Dr. Michelle Chang-Der Bedrosian, Vita Plus forage products and dairy technical specialist
Quickly eliminating oxygen from silage and keeping it out during storage is integral to maintaining silage quality. Silo plastic coverings play an important role in achieving this goal, and advancements in this technology continue meet the challenge.

Best practices for high moisture shelled corn and snaplage harvest

Posted on October 16, 2020 in Forage Foundations

By Mark Case, Vita Plus dairy specialist
Depending on who you ask, you can get drastically different answers regarding how to tell if high moisture shelled corn and snaplage are ready for harvest, so we consulted the experts to make sure we get it right.

VIDEO: Managing high moisture corn

Posted on October 16, 2020 in Forage Foundations

Stephanie Jens, Lallemand Animal Nutrition, joins Dr. Michelle Chang-Der Bedrosian, Vita Plus, to provide high moisture corn management tips to store and prevent spoilage in the silo, as well as feed it.

Sizing up your forage future

Posted on October 16, 2020 in Forage Foundations

By Nathan Hrnicek, Vita Plus forage consultant
It is important to have the correct storage space for all of your forages. If you are considering new storage structures, keep in mind the amount of space and feed you need now, as well as in the future, and how it works into your feedout strategy.