Most producers readily associate CRYSTALYX® with feeding protein tubs in the fall and winter months. Stress tubs like CRYSTALYX Brigade® and Blueprint® Battalion® are examples of self-fed, low-moisture block (LMB) supplements that are utilized more for mineral and additive delivery than protein delivery. CRYSTALYX offers several mineral and mineral with fly control LMB options as we get into the grazing season.
Consistent mineral nutrition delivery is a cornerstone of the value and benefit of using CRYSTALYX supplements. Providing the proper mineral level is necessary for the health and reproductive success of your herd. Currently, everything is more expensive than before, including mineral costs. Most everyone is looking for ways to cut costs. However, the return on investment from a good mineral program is a money maker and one of the last places to look for cutting costs. Let us run through some numbers related to the mineral program for a beef herd and reproductive rates.
What are the costs of one less pregnant cow?
550 lb. calf at $1.70/lb. = $935
Lost annual carrying cost of the cow minus cull cow value
$850 – $700 (1,000 lbs. X $0.70) = $150
Total loss = $1,085
For a 100-cow herd, with every 1% decline in pregnancy rate, the decreased income potential is $1,085. This cost is the same if you are currently at an 80% or 90% pregnancy rate.
How much CRYSTALYX mineral LMB will be needed per cow in a month?
For a 4 oz. mineral product like CRYSTALYX Blueprint® 6 Phos LMB
7.5 lbs. per month
0.25 lb. X 30 = 7.5 lbs.
We also have some mineral products with an 8 oz. target intake, where the monthly need would be 15 lbs.
How much will mineral cost per cow for a month and year?
This can vary due to the type of mineral product, fortification level and additives, such as ClariFly® for fly control. Freight becomes a factor depending on where you are relative to the manufacturing plant. The cost estimates below are just for the general discussion of the value of a good mineral program. The actual cost may vary due to the reasons stated.
The old adage, “you get what you pay for,” is true for mineral supplements. The quality of the mineral source can vary due to differences in the availability of the individual ingredients and the overall fortification level of the trace minerals. Cheap and often less bioavailable ingredients can lower the cost but decrease the value of a mineral supplement. A “Breeder” mineral is often said to have a proportion of higher quality chelated trace minerals, but the quantity is impossible to determine from the tag. Blueprint is the most transparent program on the market. All of the trace minerals are chelated Bioplex® trace minerals. Look at the tag; no sulfates, oxides or chlorides are listed.
CRYSTALYX Mineral-lyx® is an 8 oz. LMB and the cost will be in the $0.30–0.35 per day range. Bioplex chelated trace minerals provide a portion of the trace minerals. This comes to $9–10.50 per month.
CRYSTALYX Blueprint 6 Phos is a 4 oz. LMB in the cost of $0.20–0.25 per day range and utilizes the full replacement of the trace minerals with Bioplex chelated trace minerals. This comes to $6.20–7.50 per month. The lower intake of 4 oz./day helps lower the daily cost of a higher value product.
The performance improvement with CRYSTALYX Blueprint really helps to show the ROI with a quality program.
The risk of having fewer pregnant cows at $1,085 per cow greatly outweighs the investment in mineral supplementation. CRYSTALYX also gives the added benefit of a consistent and predictable intake. Performance is delivered with CRYSTALYX.