Sugars improve animal performance
HIGH sugar grasses that have been proven to improve animal performance are to be marketed by British Seed Houses in England and Wales, and David Bell Seeds in Scotland.
Launched at AgriVision and AgriScot, respectively, the mixes containing high sugar varieties are claimed to be the first of their kind marketed anywhere in the world.
The perennial ryegrass varieties in the mix, named Aber HSG1, were bred by the Institute of Grassland and Environmental Research.
Aber HSG1 will include the high sugar grasses AberAvon and AberDart. These are mixed with hybrid ryegrass AberStorm. AberDairy or AberSheep white clover blend, both formulated by IGER, will also be included for the respective species.
Michael Shannon, of David Bell Seeds, says high sugar grasses are beneficial to rumen digestion. "They include water soluble carbohydrates which are a readily available energy source in the rumen and this allows rumen microbes to process more protein from the grass."
Feeding trials also show an increase in daily milk yield of 2.7kg/cow in late lactation and a 20% boost to liveweight gain of grazing beef cattle and lambs. *