Have you ever needed a little bit of extra help when it comes the timing of adding supplements to your cattle’s diet? BioZyme Inc., maker of VitaFerm, has developed and launched its Hay Testing Tool. The online tool is just one way that producers can help calculate the supplements they will need to accompany their forages, with the ultimate goal of saving producers money.

According to Lindsey Grimes-Hall, Nutrition and Field Sales Manager at BioZyme, the online tool is simple and free to use. Once a producer has had his or her forages tested and knows the nutritional values, he or she will enter three pieces of information into the calculator: crude protein, total digestible nutrients (TDN) and the month projected to start calving. Then, the online tool will make calculations for the producer.

“This tool was developed with a lot of research since 2015, when we had a similar year to this year,” Grimes-Hall said. “That year, we had an extremely wet year, where forage availability was limited, but the producers assumed the forages they were feeding were of average quality, when actually they were below average. This calculator isn’t designed to tell producers what to do but helps them gauge the supplements they might need during the future months with the forages they have available, therefore saving them money.”

Once the producers’ data is input, line graphs are generated to give the producer a visual aid showing the percentage of protein and energy your hay is currently providing vs the recommended amount for optimal performance, based on the Nutrient Requirements of Beef Cattle from National Resource Council (NRC). Then, bar charts are created to show what months since calving producers should supplement with protein and/or energy to achieve maximum performance goals. Green bars on the charts indicate that the forage is at or above recommended NRC levels, and those months, no alternative protein or energy supplements are needed, saving the producer money.

In addition to the calculator with supplemental recommendations, the page also makes product recommendations with specific commodities to add to the cattle’s diets and supplements from the VitaFerm line of products. Visit their website to learn more about the calculator or the VitaFerm brand. 

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