Save Money on Cull Sow Feed

Date of publication : 10/25/2007
Source : BPEX - British Pig Executive
The relaxation of animal disease restrictions will help pig farmers struggling with ever-increasing numbers of cull sows, but there is still a large backlog to clear.

The cost of feeding cull sows can be a major item of expenditure but using alternative feeds can help keep costs down says the British Pig Executive (BPEX) but it is not a case of just switching feed.

Potatoes, carrots, sugar beet, silage and fodder beet can all be used but nutritional balance and other factors must be taken into account. To get the nutritional value of 1kg of concentrates, 6kg of potatoes would have to be fed.

These are heavy and bulky so producers would need to think how they were going to be fed. It may also mean using concentrates at the start of the day and potatoes at the end to get the correct balance.

BPEX Knowledge Transfer Manager Angela Cliff said: "It is a matter of quality and balance. The nutrients being fed must be properly calculated and other adjustments may well be necessary to make sure the sows are receiving the correct vitamins and minerals.

"As long as all this is borne in mind, it does have the potential to ease the cost of feeding cull sows in this difficult time."

Copies of a handbook giving details of the nutritional value of a range of alternative feeds by Prof Sandra Edwards of Newcastle University can be obtained by contacting members of the BPEX KT Team.
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