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Forage for Knowledge
Published 15 November 13
Forage for Knowledge is the DairyCo grazing grass quality project for 2013. We will be following 10 farmers across GB as they aim to get great quality and consistency for the whole grazing season. Meet the farmers
What are you trying to achieve:
- Aim to achieve 12 ME (metabolisable energy) grass all season not just in May
- Find out the true potential of grazed grass
- Know the quality and quantity grazed and accurately budget milk from grass - it is probably more than you think!
Sign up to receive the Forage for Knowledge e-newsletter, which will be emailed to you fortnightly across the grazing season. The newsletter will link to the latest grassland measurements, topical technical hints to help you get the best from your grass and other forages and will let you know about grassland events in your area.
The farmers in our e-newsletter are aiming to achieve maximum potential from their grass. By regularly publishing their measurements of Grass growth, (GG) and analysis of Dry matter (DM), Metabolic energy (ME) and Crude Protein (CP). We are aiming to demonstrate the true potential profit from grass.
Well managed grass is a consistent feed and will maintain quality across the grazing season. Over the last three years grass analysis has shown that it is possible to maintain an ME of about 12 across the season, wherever you are in the country.
The farms picked for the project are examples of excellent grassland management and this year they have been joined by Alistair Cliff from Cheshire and David Utting from Suffolk.
Why measuring grass growth helps
Grazed grass is the cheapest feed on most British dairy farms, yet it is also the most poorly utilised. Whether grazed or fed as silage, grass provides over half the dry matter intake of most dairy cows. Measuring grass growth helps to demonstrate the true potential of grazed grass if managed well. This can be measured using a rising plate meter.
Milkbench+ figures consistently show that forage utilisation is a huge profit driver across the board. Making and using good quality forage makes sense what ever farming system you practise. What is Milkbench+?