Reducing Feed Wastage

AUSTRALIA - Estimates have shown that 10 per cent of feed delivered to the farm is wasted leading to large losses at a time when feed prices are rising.
calendar icon 25 February 2008
clock icon 3 minute read

Managing those losses can not only save money and reduce waste, but crucially be the difference between profit and loss.

According to John Carr from Murdoch University's Department of Production Animal Health and Medicine in Perth West Australia, on a 250 sow farm as much as 150 tonnes of feed per year can be lost.

If wastage could be cut by 50 per cent then in Australian terms this could see saving of as much as 8-9 A Cents per kilogram deadweight - A$6.30 per pig. This according to Dr Carr these savings could be that difference between profit and loss.

Some of the crucial areas to manage are in feed storage, delivering to and filling feed bins, loading from the bins and moving the feed around the farm in barrows.

The way feeders are set up, position and how accessible they are can also have an effect on how much and how evenly the pigs feed and how much feed they waste.

The condition of the feeders and their proximity to water feeders also plays a role in how much is wasted. Attention to the correct feed preparations and the correct ingredients and medications can also save money as the optimum feed is needed for the correct weight gain without waste.

Prevention of mould or spoilage through rodents is another essential precaution to save costs.

According to Dr Carr an adult rate will eat 15 grams of feed a day. With 100 rats on a farm that could amount to four tonnes a year. Attacks by seagulls can be even word with them consuming six times the amount of a rat.

Dr Carr concludes: "To survive today's feed prices, we must minimise feed wastage to minimise cost of production."

Further Reading

More information - You can view our full report on managing feed clicking here.
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