ANNOUNCER: Happy New Year and welcome to the latest “Block Talk” Podcast, brought to you by CRYSTALYX® Brand supplements. As we begin this new year it’s a good time to think about what’s new and, as important, what’s new AND useful in agriculture. Mark Robbins is a nutritionist and the research and nutrition services manager for CRYSTALYX. In his latest blog, he maintains that innovations in agriculture are not only good, but necessary.
MARK: I look at agriculture and you’ve got a couple of opposing forces there. On the one hand you have people saying, hey, by the year 2050 we’re going to have nine-plus billion people to feed. How are we going to do that, when, all around the world there are already people that are starving. So you have somebody say, well we can do that, we have to embrace innovations, and some of that might be something like GMO feeds or crops. And then you have other people saying, well, I want to feed nine billion people, but I don’t know that we need to do it with GMOs and things like that. I’ve always said that you can’t feed the people of the 21st century with the farming practices of the 19th century. It would be good to go back to the old days, because everybody has used that as being more natural and wholesome and less chemicals. But the fact of the matter is…innovations are coming every year. There’s innovations that have been out there for a while that people still aren’t adapting, and maybe those are the ones that I was kinda looking at here, is, some of the innovations that we’ve had recently. Things that we’ve had for a while that people need to take a second look at.
Related article: Innovations are not just nice, they are necessary
ANNOUNCER: Innovations in crop and livestock production have come a long way in the last few decades, out of necessity.
MARK: A four-row planter and then maybe somebody got a six-row planter with narrow rows, and then, maybe even an eight-row. You know, today they’re up to forty-eight rows. And those farmers have to have that equipment, that innovation, the field equipment that’s that wide with GPS controls, because I don’t know how you would be able to stay on line with some of those implement that are thirty, forty and fifty feed wide. You about have to have GPS to compete in that. When you look at cattlemen, they have to run a lot more cattle then we used to, when we were kids, when our grandparents were starting out. And the way you do that is, one person has to be able to accomplish more. And self-fed supplements are certainly things along that line that allow you to accomplish more for each person that you have employed, or just for yourself in some situations.
ANNOUNCER: So what are some of advantages that self-fed supplements like CRYSTALYX bring to the table?
MARK: It really multiplies your time, because one person can do a lot more with that supplement. What you have, since it’s self-fed, it’s there 24-7, depending on the self-fed supplement that you use. But if you use a low-moisture block like CRYSTALYX, when they’re properly stocked, they’re going to last from two to three weeks…and a lot of customers don’t always look at what does it cost me for my pickup truck, my cake feeder, my storage, my wastage, and then the time and labor to actually take that out every day. And some people will say, well I’ve got to have something for the hired man to do anyway. I think people like that are becoming fewer and fewer when times get tough, because, more likely, they do have something else that person could be working on as opposed to feeding the cattle every day.
ANNOUNCER: And once those barrels are out there and have been consumed, there’s another CRYSTALYX innovation that’s eliminated the need to come back for the empty barrel.
MARK: So, what you’re talking about there is our BioBarrel®, and that has been out for about eleven years now. Our sales of that grow every year. I was surprised that when you would talk to a group of ranchers, you’d have some people that were kinda on the fence, but the ones I was always most intrigued by were the people that just hands-down said, yup, that’s for me. I don’t want to go out and I don’t want to pick up those barrels or plastic tubs anymore…If you have a steel barrel or a plastic tub, you can’t really tell how much is inside that until you walk or drive over to it and look in. We hadn’t really talked about that a lot, but enough people mentioned it, that it must be quite valuable to some people to be able to do that. Some people say they use binoculars to look at them from the road or from a distance. And I guess of that saves you driving into a pasture and looking in there and you feel that’s of value then we probably ought to tell more people about it.
ANNOUNCER: One of the newest innovations from CRYSTALYX is a completely new line of supplements called Blueprint.
MARK: CRYSTALYX Blueprint products are a product line that we just rolled out this last fall. And, what you’re look at with Blueprint, this is Alltech technology that goes deeper than just CRYSTALYX. It’ll be in other feeds from Hubbard feeds, and our other brands as well. The Blueprint technology, it’s the total replacement of inorganic trace minerals. So with the Blueprints you have a two-step process there where you’re only using the organic Bioplex's and you’re removing those inorganic oxides and sulfates. And I think, over time, we’re going to find more and more that that removal of the inorganics is as important, or possibly more important, than choosing the organic Bioplex's as a sole source of those trace minerals.
ANNOUNCER: So, to sum up your message for this new year is it to take a look at what has changed and learn how it can benefit your operation.
MARK: Innovations aren’t just nice, they’re going to be necessary. Everybody has a different time budget that they have stuff that they have to get done every day. But when it comes to supplementing your cattle, the nice thing about CRYSTALYX is it’s there 24/7, you can do it two weeks at a time. If you want to go check your cattle to see them every day, you can still do that. But where you don’t have to be out there each day delivering feed, it gives you the option that if you have something else to get done today, and you don’t get to see you cattle today or the next day, that’s your choice. You’re not being forced into being out there each day.
ANNOUNCER: That’s it for this Block Talk Podcast brought to you by CRYSTALYX Brand Supplements an easy way to provide self-fed protein, vitamins and trace minerals in a low moisture supplement formulated for all types of feeding situations from low quality forages to fly control and everything in between. Learn more about all that CRYSTALYX has to offer by going to www.crystalyx.com. It all adds up to Results by the Barrel.