Less spoilage. Less shrink. MORE FEED FOR YOUR HERD.

Posted on April 19, 2023 in Forage Foundations
One strategy to control costs on your dairy is to retain of much of your homegrown forages - and the nutrients they contain - as possible.  Choosing the right inoculant and oxygen barrier plastic will help you limit dry matter (DM) loss and spoilage.  

7 things to think about when you get into new-crop corn silage

Posted on February 21, 2023 in Forage Foundations
By Keith Lesmeister, Ph.D., Vita Plus dairy specialist and Michelle Chang-Der Bedrosian, Ph.D., Vita Plus forage specialist | The silo was sealed well, the applicator was winterized, the chopper was cleaned and put away, and hopefully, the harvest crew finally caught up on some much-needed sleep.  Temperatures dropped and, hopefully, so did the silage pH.  Now it’s time to start feeding that corn silage.

Plant density for silage production

Posted on February 21, 2023 in Forage Foundations
By Luiz Ferraretto, Ph.D., University of Wisconsin-Madison | Forage needs vary vastly within and among dairies across years.  Implementation of practices targeting greater yields is key; however, finding the sweet spot between yield and nutritive value is no simple task, especially when producing silage with high fiber digestibility.

Right-sizing your feed pad

Posted on February 21, 2023 in Forage Foundations
By Jon Rasmussen, Vita Plus | While farms may “break the rules” of forage storage every now and then, the goal should always be to SAFELY store forages with nearly zero oxygen exposure.  If you find yourself frequently breaking the rules, it might be time to resize your feed pad.  Following are four rules to help you in the planning process.

Forage fragility impacts on ration fiber

Posted on February 21, 2023 in Forage Foundations
By Kassidy Buse, University of Nebraska | The quality and characteristics of forages can have direct impact on milk production and profits.  We typically focus on characteristics such as starch content, protein content and NDF digestibility as we include forages in rations.  But as the attributes of fiber and its fractions have continued to be explored, forage fragility has emerged as an area of interest.

Inoculants with L. hilgardii provide more flexibility in feedout timing

Posted on February 21, 2023 in Forage Foundations
By Renato Schmidt, Ph.D., Lallemand Animal Nutrition | Quality forage inoculants can be used to control the fermentation and quality of forages, as well as enhance the overall value at feedout. A newly available inoculant offers flexibility in feedout by allowing a silage to be fed as soon as 15 days post-ensiling.

Get the most from your forage with Crop-N-Rich silage inoculants

Posted on November 23, 2022 in Forage Foundations
Contact your consultant to book today! Vita Plus Crop-N-Rich inoculants are pure, effective bacterial inoculants that offer unmatched ease of use and are backed with immense research.

Crop selection: Ask the cow what she needs

Posted on November 21, 2022 in Forage Foundations
By Dr. Zach Sawall | We often focus on growing crops to maximize tonnage, and we figure out how to deal with that feed once it’s in the bunk. A more economical approach is to look at what the cow needs and focus on growing forage to meet those needs.

Regional reports: Harvest 2022

Posted on November 18, 2022 in Forage Foundations
A long fall allowed for great harvest conditions across most of the upper Midwest.  Vita Plus consultants across the region recap the 2022 harvest.

Safety must be top winter priority

Posted on November 18, 2022 in Forage Foundations
By Jonathan Ydstie, Vita Plus | Accidents and fatalities increase 17% in the winter. As we think about our farm teams, we likely have some employees who need reminders of the dangers winter can bring. Others may have very little experience working in the cold and need proper training to work safely through the season ahead.

Design YOUR ideal feed center

Posted on November 18, 2022 in Forage Foundations
By Jon Rasmussen | More farms are considering feed centers as a means to reduce shrink and improve efficiency by reducing the steps, wheel traffic, and time to load a TMR mixer. Here are a few suggested steps in the process of designing your ideal feed center.

3 steps to winterize your inoculant applicator

Posted on November 18, 2022 in Forage Foundations
By Steve Murty, Vita Plus | Equipment repairs are the last thing you want to deal with when a crop is ready to harvest.  Supply chain issues we often face today add to the frustration.  This applies to inoculant applicators like any other equipment.  A little time invested now can save headaches next spring.

11 tips for efficient corn silage harvest and storage

Posted on August 29, 2022 in Forage Foundations
By Steve Murty, Vita Plus forage specialist | Nutrients lost through forage shrink have a real cost to your dairy. Here are 11 tips to efficiently harvest, pack, and cover your corn silage to reduce shrink and add dollars to the bottom line.

Drone technology to dial in forage inventories

Posted on August 29, 2022 in Forage Foundations
With Terry Seubert, Vita Plus IT services development coordinator, and Dr. Michelle Chang-Der Bedrosian, Vita Plus forage and dairy technical services | Drone technology can help producers dial in their forage inventories and better manage their feeding programs.

VIDEO: Preparing your processor

Posted on August 29, 2022 in Forage Foundations
Part of a successful corn silage season is having a fine-tuned kernel processor. To help you get prepared for this year's harvest, we walk you through what and how to check if your kernel processor is ready to hit the fields.

Milk grasses for all they’re worth

Posted on August 29, 2022 in Forage Foundations
By Cody McCary, Vita Plus forage specialist | The stage of plant growth and timing of harvest are essential to achieving the yield and quality goals for a given grass crop. The progression from one stage of maturity to the next often happens rapidly. To combat a narrow harvest window, consistent monitoring of in-field conditions and plant stage of maturity is necessary.