Current Progressive Dairy digital edition

Feed & Nutrition

Learn about all aspects of the dairy cow ration, from harvest to storage and balancing additives to forage supplementation.


Forages are the foundation of sound, economical and animal-healthy rations. In most situations, home-produced forages are the most economical source of fiber, protein and energy in the dairy ration. A primary role of forages is to provide a source of effective fiber to stimulate chewing and rumination activity.

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During times of low milk prices, it is important to analyze the price of the feedstuffs you are using and fine-tune the management of various aspects of the dairy. What is the level of milk production on the dairy? Use or start a spreadsheet to monitor daily herd milk production. On a daily basis, keep track of the number of fresh cows, cows dried, cows died and cows beefed. Each month, weigh the cow’s milk. By tracking this information, you will be able to know your baseline for production and how it changes day to day according to feeding, environment or management changes.

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