Ken Wilson of Hammond, NY works with Don Upton of Feed Commodities International and Jim Batz of Hubbard Feeds. Ken attended a feeder meeting and after a follow up call by Don, started using CRYSTALYX® in 2008. He is using Transition Stress™ Formula in pre and post calving pens and Buffer-lyx® in the milking cows. He also uses Crystal Phos® as a mineral program in the older heifer groups. Ken is milking 200 cows and raising all the heifers. Time savings, convenience and consistent nutrient delivery of the CRYSTALYX® products were factors in using them for the heifers. He credits CRYSTALYX® for the improved cull rates over the past year. He uses the BioBarrel® in all formulas.
Ken decided to try the products because he was having ketosis problems with his fresh cows. This was resulting in higher vet cost and losing milk production in early lactation. He has a high producing herd, but realized there were times when maintaining a stable rumen pH was a problem due to the carbohydrate loads in the diets. Ken was using a competitors product and then switched to CRYSTALYX® due to the BioBarrel® and Buffer-lyx® formulas.
Ken observed, “There has been a 90% reduction in ketosis and less visits from the vet. There are less retained placentas also. I either spend the money on preventing the problem by using CRYSTALYX® or spend about the same amount on the vet and risk losing milk or the cow.”
Cull rate was running 26% prior to using CRYSTALYX®. Currently it is at 17%. He is convinced the blocks are the reason. Ken determined he was saving about $35,000 in reduced animal loss, resulting in a 3 to 1 return on his investment when considering just the reduced cull rate. The lower vet cost, healthier cows and improved milk production are areas where Ken sees CRYSTALYX® products helping his operation.