Westmeath Dairy Farmer Improves Feed Efficiency by 25%

Westmeath Dairy Farmer Improves Feed Efficiency by 25%

Photo contains Mark Delahunty, Lakeland Dairies ( left ) and Jimmy Maloney.

Jimmy and Catherine Maloney farm at Redmondstown near Castlegeoghan in Co. Westmeath. They purchase all their animal feeds from Lakeland Dairies, and their farm is one of several monitor farms across the Lakeland Dairies catchment area that embarked on a soil improvement programme in 2013 as part of the Lakeland RumiSmart Sustain fully integrated nutrition system.

Jimmy is milking 139 spring calving Holstein Friesian Cows. The grazing platform is around 40 hectares (98 acres) and the herd is milked in a modern 16 unit parlour. 

Working closely with the Lakeland Dairies technical support team, and by implementing the Lakeland Soil Improvement Programme along with other elements of Lakeland RumiSmart Sustain, Jimmy has achieved significant improvements in the key drivers of efficiency and profitability on his farm.

In 2014 grass utilised on the grazing platform was 10.1 tonnes / hectare. Milk solids were 393Kgs per cow and an impressive 1,376 kgs of milk solids was produced per ha at a stocking rate of 3.5 cows / ha on the grazing platform. Milk from forage was 3,290 litres per cow, which is another key measure of efficiency on this farm.

Growing more grass and producing more milk from grass meant Jimmy reduced his concentrate feed usage by 25% in 2014 when compared to 2013. He is now using approximately 750 kgs per cow compared to one tonne of meal before he started on the Lakeland RumiSmart Sustain Programme, and this year he expects to carry 25 to 30 more cows due to improved grassland productivity without spending any additional money on meals or fertilizers.

Summer feeding on the Maloney Farm

For cows at grass full time Lakeland Dairies recommend a high energy / low protein ration to avoid an oversupply of protein in the diet. However, when choosing a ration for use at this time of the year and throughout the breeding season, care should be taken to ensure a full complement of minerals and trace elements are being supplied on a daily basis at the feed levels being applied on individual farms.

Jimmy is currently feeding the Lakeland Summer Supercream 16 which is a high energy nut designed to help maximise conception rates where lower levels of concentrate are being fed at grass. 

The Summer Supercream 16 has the following important features:

  • 16% crude protein ration which is maize based to maximise energy density
  • Contains RumiSmart Essential Oils to help lower blood urea levels when cows are at grass
  • Contains RumiSmart Yeast to help maximise milk production and improve milk composition 
  • Contains high levels of protected copper, selenium and zinc to help maximise absorption in the presence of antagonists. Biotin is also included to improve hoof health
  • Delivers full complement of minerals and Cal Mag  in 3.0 kgs / head / day

Jimmy is very happy with the quality of advice, service and support he receives from Lakeland Dairies, and can point to measurable and significant improvements in efficiency and profitability on the farm.

Farmers interested in finding out more about Summer Rations, the soil improvement programme or any of the other components of the Lakeland RumiSmart Sustain programme should talk to their Lakeland Dairies Feed representative or alternatively contact the Lakeland Farm Services centre on 1890 47 47 20.