Forage facing: Simple strategies for quality feeds
Posted on August 14, 2013 in Dairy Performance
By Jon Rasmussen
With harvest just around the corner, you’re planning how you will put up the best quality forages possible. That quality will translate to milk production throughout the upcoming year. When you invest a significant amount of time and money into your forages, you want to make sure you maintain quality in every step from the field to the feedbunk. That’s where proper facing of bunkers and piles becomes so important. A good face on the bunker or pile reduces exposure to oxygen and helps minimize forage spoilage and nutrient loss. This can have significant economic impacts. Let’s say you have a 500-cow dairy and feed 50 pounds of corn silage valued at $40 per ton. If you can reduce your feedout shrink by 5 percent with the help of defacing, you can save $9,125 in feed per year. Check out this video for simple tips you can use to make sure you’re doing the best job possible of facing your bunker or piles. In the long run, this will help you save time and dollars in terms of wasted feed. Most importantly, properly facing your bunkers and piles will help keep you and your team safe. About the author: Jon Rasmussen is a dairy technology specialist on the Vita Plus team. He grew up on a small dairy farm in northeast Wisconsin. Rasmussen attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison and earned a bachelor’s degree in dairy science. For the past six years, he’s specialized in records analysis for the Vita Plus dairy team. He works with dairy producers and consultants to help them evaluate data for improved dairy business management.