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Hay and Forage Quality Preservation

The Importance of Hay and Forage Preservation for Ruminant Nutritional Health

Forage quality and a farmer’s ability to preserve this quality are the foundations of a successful ruminant nutritional health programme. Quality roughage should contain the maximum digestible energy and protein in order to meet the needs of high producing ruminants.

Several factors can reduce an ideal forage into an average or fair forage. One of the most frustrating factors resulting in downgraded hay quality are mould and microbes (e.g., fungi and wild yeast).

Harvest and storage losses for hay and silage can represent a significant source of economic loss. After all, preserving home-grown forages reduces the cost of buying extra feed. Before hay and forage are harvested or baled, the addition of preservative products almost always results in a good return to a producer's investment. By controlling mould and wild yeast growth in a wide variety of forage, feed and feed ingredients, Kemin’s specifically formulated NutriSAVE solutions make quality feed possible regardless of weather and harvest conditions.

How To Improve Forage Quality Through Inoculant & Acid-Based Preservatives

When crops are harvested with an ideal moisture concentration, silage inoculants can help to economically enhance the fermentation process. Acid-based preservatives for hay, haylage or silage will furthermore reduce losses from moulds, bacteria and fungi, especially when the forage was not harvested at the ideal moisture levels. Excessive microbial growth can cause hay bale heating, increasing dry matter loss and producing Maillard reactions, which reduce dry matter and crude protein digestibility.

After extensive research, Kemin developed NutriSAVE, a preservative programme consisting of several effective preservatives to combat these issues. The NutriSAVE preservative programme addresses high moisture forage and hay with organic acid preservatives and microbial growth in silage with inoculants and organic acid blends.