Monitoring of Feed Ingredients

Developing a Cost-Efficient Strategy for Continuous Quality Monitoring of Feed Ingredients

Rich-protein grain, cereals, oilseeds and various by-products are the common feed ingredients for poultry and swine. In recent years, farmers worldwide are struggling with the increasing prices of raw materials which resulted in the need to maintain optimal livestock performance in a cost-effective manner. As feed usually represents about 60-70% of the cost of animal production, it is beneficial to have precise information on the nutrient content in your different feed raw materials to formulate feed for animals and achieve effective feed management.

Optimizing feed cost through precise nutrient management

It is important to understand that variables of nutrient content in feed ingredients can be observed and the prices fluctuate all the time. However, optimizing your feed formulation can take time and making the changes too often can be troublesome. Setting a regular schedule to monitor raw material quality can help reduce the costs that could rise due to prices increased.

As an illustration, when optimizing your feed formulation, you may have procured soybean meal with a protein content of 48%. However, in the next batch, the protein content drops to 45%. If there is no monitoring protocol in place and this change is not detected, it can lead to insufficient protein in your feed, preventing your animals from performing well.

Conversely, the costs of feed ingredients are subject to continuous fluctuations. In 2023, for instance, the price of soybean meal increased €66 per ton just within a month. When prices rise significantly, adjusting ingredient ratios to meet nutritional needs can save costs. With a good strategy to adjust feed formulation, the cost can be reduced between €0.1-0.2 per animal per year, which, for example, adds up to €10,000-20,000 for a farm with 100,000 pigs. Therefore, monitoring your nutrient values regularly will enable you to manage your feed cost effectively.

Developing a system to analyze feed ingredient nutrition for optimal rations

Efficient optimization of your feed formulation not only yields cost savings but also minimizes waste, thereby enhancing sustainability. Moreover, a thorough understanding of the nutritional composition of feed ingredients is vital to prevent over- or underfeeding.

Numerous methods exist for analyzing feed nutrient content, with wet chemistry analysis recognized for its precision in feed evaluation. However, in practical applications, there is a demand for methods that are fast, simple, and time efficient. A widely acceptable approach involves the application of Near-Infrared (NIR) spectroscopy. Many companies and laboratories employ NIR devices for feed analysis routinely. While stationary NIR solutions are available, many advisors and farm managers would like to opt for faster, portable, and versatile solutions for measurement of feed composition. Portable NIR device offers robust and high-quality input data from raw materials and feed ingredients for ration calculation or feed formulation software and subsequent formulation adjustments.

Why FeedCares solution?

FeedCares solution comprises of AgroCares Scanner, a portable scanner with NIR sensor technology that measures reflected light of the material and translates the measurement to values with the prediction models built based on the global feed database. Therefore, dry matter, crude proteins, crude fat and other essential qualitative parameters of raw materials can be quickly determined on-site, with a less time-consuming procedure. This enables the animal nutritionist, farm advisors and farmers to routinely monitor the nutrient content of the raw materials, optimize feed formulation, and control the quality of the feed to meet the nutritional requirement of animals in a cost-effective way. Moreover, through the smartphone application, the real-time report can be reviewed.

  • Cost Savings: On-site analysis saves lab expenses and transportation costs.
  • Improved Feed Formulation: Accurate data crafts precise diets, enhancing animal growth and health.
  • Enhanced Feed Quality: Scanner ensures uniform, high-quality feed production.
  • Faster Decision-Making: Real-time analysis aids prompt feed adjustments.
  • Sustainable Farming: Balanced diets minimize waste and environmental impact.

For more information or further discussion on the FeedCares solution, please send us a message via Contact Us | AgroCares

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *