5 April 2002

Over the odds for Mgsupplements?

COULD you be paying over the odds for magnesium supplements? Prices quoted for them vary widely from just over 1p/day to 15p/day.

While no dairy producer can afford deaths from staggers, basic supplements such as 70g/cow/day of calmag at 1.2p/day or 150g/cow/day of magnesium chloride at 2.7p/day, provide cost-effective solutions, according to Mole Valley Farmers.

East Anglia-based Kite consultant Tanya Colman agrees, saying calmag is most commonly used by her clients. "Calmag can be incorporated in concentrates, mixed with feed in a wagon or sprinkled on top of feed.

"Where concentrate feeding is minimal, it is easiest to supplement cows using magnesium chloride. However, it must be dissolved in all troughs as it makes water taste bitter."

Salisbury Plain-based producer Christian Fox pasture dresses dry cow grazing areas with calmag. "I take a bucket and dust calmag along the fence line." &#42