We have often written about the delivery costs of hand-fed supplements adding greatly to the total cost of a supplement program. Yet, many times those delivery costs do not get figured into the cost of the supplement.
The holiday season is upon us and most of us certainly have a lot of things to be thankful for, including plentiful food, a warm place to take refuge, and the pleasure of working in an industry with the best people on Earth! Of course, it is also very easy to overindulge on many unnecessary calories during this time of year.
Do you supplement your sheep and goats? Do they have access to the nutrients they need each day? As someone who is personally involved in the small-ruminant industry, I have a firsthand understanding of the lack of good-quality, palatable supplements formulated specifically for sheep or goats.
“Which protein product do I need?” This question comes up with some frequency when speaking with producers or dealers about the many CRYSTALYX® protein options available. Since we are entering the primary protein season of the year, I thought it would be wise to share a short refresher about the differences between livestock diet protein sources.
Late winter/early spring is usually a time of muddy sloppy conditions, which can spell trouble for hooves. From cracked hooves to foot rot, poor hoof health takes a toll on your livestock, no matter what the species. Wet, sloppy conditions just exacerbate hoof problems, softening them up, making them more susceptible to injury and microbial entry. The best way to combat poor hoof health is to grow a strong, hard hoof in the first place.
Many of us have seen daily news and social media updates regarding the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. In particular, those of us in the ag community have an interest in both livestock and companion animals that have been impacted by the flooding. There has been daily coverage of livestock being moved out of flooded areas, desperate to find higher ground. For those who are familiar with Gulf Coast grazing lands and the endless acres of low-lying, boggy, marshy pastures, we understand the challenges associated with their efforts. The recovery ahead will take not only a few days or weeks, but many months and perhaps even more.
Just over a year ago, CRYSTALYX® made some formulation and name changes with several products. Two of our small ruminant products, Sheep-lyx® and Goat-Lyx®, went through some of the largest upgrades and changes. These changes were for the good, enhancing an already good product line. CRYSTALYX® is promoted as a program based supplement, and we’ve learned over the years that the best fortified products perform the best in a wide array of nutritional programs. This is true for our small ruminant products as well.
The current cattle economics situation is making everyone evaluate their feeding programs and overall production cost. Markets have their cycles and it is hard to say how long this period of low prices will last, given how quickly markets have moved in the last 2-3 years. As you look at your feeding program, remember it is the cost per pound of product sold that is the true driver of profitability.
It’s hard to believe that we’re already in October. Three months remain in 2016 and three months remain before the VFD rule goes into effect. While this rule change does not affect any CRYSTALYX® products, we want to be sure that you are well versed in what will be affected and what you will need to do. Below are 5 more questions that have come from the field as the deadline draws near.