Feeding Programs for Beef Cows

An Alternative Using Kent Beef Cow Co-Product Minerals

Steve Sachtleben, Ph.D., PAS, Kent Feeds Beef Nutritionist

Along with corn, hay and co-products, dicalcium phosphate has become scarce and expensive. Generally, beef cow diets include hay, corn, maybe corn gluten or distillers, and a conventional free-choice mineral. These free-choice minerals contain a high concentration of dicalcium phosphate, thus added phosphorus. In diets with corn gluten feed or distillers grains, supplemental phosphorus is not necessary as these co-products are very high in this mineral. Additionally, producers are being challenged by their state governments regarding phosphorus loads on crop and pasture acres.

Thus, if a producer is taking advantage of co-products and reducing his diet’s cost, he can further reduce cost by offering his cows the proper mineral program. This mineral program should not contain phosphorus!

Kent Feeds has developed three (3) new minerals designed for beef cow diets in which corn gluten feed or distillers’ grains are included:

Beef Cow Co-Product Balancer (1615)
A meal product to be used in a totally mixed diet (TMR) at a rate of 0.5# per head per day.

Beef Cow-Co-Product Balancer (1611)
A pelleted product to be fed at a rate of 0.75# per head per day in a TMR.

Beef Cow Co-Product Mineral (1618)
A free-choice mineral with expected intakes of 4 ounces per head per day.

All three products do not contain dical and are balanced to meet other specifications derived from the FW 365 ADE Mineral program. Additionally, all three provide thiamine in adequate concentrations to help suppress the occurrence of polio (PEM).

In summary, Kent offers products specifically formulated for beef cows fed diets with co-products. In times when dicalcium phosphate inventories are tight, and that which is available, expensive, other feed options are available which do not contain phosphorus. These Kent products being devoid of dical, are not under any purchasing restrictions whatsoever and in the end will be less expensive to the cattle producer when the use of co-products plus balancer is compared to corn plus free-choice mineral, which contains added phosphorus.