10 November 1995

Slow energy risk

HIGH forage maize diets will need supplementing with extra sources of faster-fermenting energy to maintain dairy cow performance, says Mark Harrison, of Leics-based Farmlab.

His warning is based on results from 560 forage maize samples analysed so far this autumn.

"Quicker fermenting sources of energy will be needed this year, especially where maize makes up more than half of the forage dry matter in the diet."

He suggests sources such as molasses and blends, ground cereals and fodder beet to complement the slower degradability of the starch found in the forage.