“Fodder, Grain and Grass” the focus of the second AFIA Our Place Workshop
15 June 2017
The Australian Fodder Industry Association (AFIA), in partnership with TPC Agriculture, is excited to announce our second Our Place workshop to be held at Will Conheady’s dairy operation, 360 McKinnons Bridge Road, Noorat, Victoria on Thursday 22 June 2017 from 11.30am.
Will Conheady is involved in a 2,500 cow dairy operation over five milking farms with an autumn calving pattern to make the most of the spring flush of grass. They run a low input system and have average production of around 580kgMS.
A primarily grazing based system provides the best economical returns with feeding of fodder occurring mostly in the summer months when the cows have been dried off. Most fodder is home produced silage and purchased fodder is usually in the form of protein hay to feed out in winter.
Economics are important and the aim is to fill the cow up and balance the ration; 70-80 per cent of the diet is fixed and primarily pasture with fibre to hold them together and grain to fit the ration. Currently the grain ration is higher in wheat with a focus on the cents per litre for energy. Depending on the time of the year they will target protein or energy and will talk to their feed mill for nutritional advice.
Fodder purchases are made from growers they have been buying from for multiple years which helps guarantee they have a secure feed source - these relationships are very important to ensure they can secure their fodder needs and to maximise quality. There is an emphasis on quality of hay - “we believe buying quality hay is paramount”.
Feed tests are used but they also like to do visual assessments and Will’s father will head up to Northern Victoria before buying fodder to look at, smell and feel the hay before putting it to the ultimate test - the cows, to get the best indication if it is worth purchasing, particularly when they are looking at a new supplier.
Join us on Thursday 22 June 2017 from 11.30am to learn more about:
- Balancing the diet in grazing systems.
- Reducing feed wastage to avoid losing money.
- Maximising fodder intake.
- Th importance of relationships with fodder producers.
- Balancing the feed and the economics.
“To date, 2017 has certainly produced an abundant supply of fodder in many regions around the country but those higher yields do not always deliver the quality required in today’s modern dairy enterprises,” said John McKew, AFIA Chief Executive Officer.
“This workshop, the second of ten in a collaborative effort by AFIA and TPC Agriculture, aims to assist dairy farmers in these challenging times, and we encourage AFIA members and non-members to participate in as many workshops as possible to realise their full potential,” urged Mr McKew.
A free BBQ lunch will be provided on the day after the workshop.
Chief Executive Officer
Australian Fodder Industry Association
W: (03) 9670 0523
M: 0438 182 600