With Agriculture, you can count on change, uncertainty, challenge, risk and opportunity. It’s only 5 months from 2017 when the new Veterinary Feed Directive becomes law of the land. This directive/ruling will regulate the feeding of Antibiotics in food animals giving oversight to veterinarians and has been well described in previous blogs by my colleagues.
Cattle feeding will be changing in 2017. Starting Jan 1, 2017, all livestock producers will need a veterinary feed directive (VFD) in order to utilize antibiotics in the feed. Trying to wade through all the regulations can be a nightmare, so I’ve pulled out 5 things you need to know to be ready for 2017.
We realize there are many information sources that livestock producers can seek out and are honored that many producers find CRYSTALYX® activities as a reliable and trusted source for information.
I was riding through Montana last week with a sales associate, and one of his comments regarding the year we have been having was, “What a great winter for feeding CRYSTALYX®!” I have heard this comment many times over the years when we have had a milder fall/winter.
The incessant rains have made for a wet summer for many cattle producers across the US. Sometimes, despite our best efforts, cattle have to stand in water resulting in more cases of foot rot. Why should you care? Lame cows won’t eat enough and thus won’t make enough milk for calves. Lame calves won’t graze either, resulting in further reduced weight gains. Lame bulls will not travel to seek out females in heat, meaning more open cows at the end of breeding season. Overall, lameness can be very costly in the long run.
July is here, and with it, some of the hottest days of the summer are just ahead of us. Self-fed intake of CRYSTALYX® Brand Supplements can be higher in the summer/warmer months. During the manufacturing process, CRYSTALYX® is packaged in to barrels at a temperature of approximately 150 to 175 degrees. At this temperature, CRYSTALYX® is very pliable, much like Play Doh® or thick cookie dough. As it cools, it becomes hard. Hardness is a primary factor in determining the self-fed intake of CRYSTALYX®. As you would expect, if CRYSTALYX® warms back up towards that 150 degree temperature, it will become softer again. That is just the nature of a Low-Moisture Block.
Vaccines are an important part of the annual ‘to do’ list of any livestock operation. However, with the ever increasing list of cattle vaccines available, the cost to vaccinate can range from $3/hd up to $9/hd, not including labor. When you consider how much of an investment vaccines are, can you take the chance that they won’t be effective?
There is some apprehension about when the market will correct itself and who will be caught with expensive feeder calves. We should enjoy high feeder calf prices for a while given current market conditions. That said, the market will correct itself. When and how much are the real questions?