Harvest Advisory: Plan ahead to safeguard feed from mycotoxins

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Don’t risk your investment and profits when the stakes are high, say feed quality experts.

Taking steps to protect feed from contaminants is advised for livestock farmers and feed mills post this year’s harvest, say feed quality experts.

This is especially important in higher risk production regions of Canada and the U.S. –  such as Southern Ontario and key pockets of the midwest  – that received high rainfall over the growing season. In addition, mitigation is an important consideration everywhere given the higher costs invested in raising livestock.

“The flags are up that protecting feed quality will be important this year post-harvest,” says Paul Garvey with CBS Bio Platforms. “We’re advising farmers and feed mills to plan ahead and have mitigation options ready. Grain management technology can help you safeguard your feed to protect feed supply, animal health and productivity.”

Higher risk, higher stakes

Harvest in some areas is delayed with late summer and fall rains. As a result sampling and testing for mycotoxin levels is also behind. But all indications point to taking action, he says.

“Here in Southern Ontario, for example, we had much higher than normal rainfall levels in late summer, including some flooding, in major corn growing regions. The corn crop has been stressed and harvest will be later.  The good news is we’re expecting strong yields. But anytime in the past we’ve stressed the crop and had a later harvest, it’s been more prone to mycotoxin concerns. Taking steps to protect feed is a good insurance policy to protect the investment in each animal.”

The stakes are higher today than in past years because that investment is much higher due to significantly priced commodities and other factors impacting input costs. “With beef calves, for example, the price of animals going into the feedlot has more than doubled compared to recent past years. As a result, the potential economic loss due to any contaminants in feed is significantly compounded.”

Protecting every feed dollar

The higher risk and higher stakes extend across animal species, he notes. Feed mycotoxin concerns impact poultry, swine, beef, dairy & more. This places greater risk on feed mills and farmers to make sure the integrity of feed sources is safeguarded and not undermined by contaminants that can reduce quality and negatively impact animal performance.

“Making the most out of every feed dollar is crucial to protect margins,” says Garvey. “Because mycotoxins are often a hidden cost, especially when the risk is high, it pays to be proactive and have a solution in place.”

Common sources of contaminants include pathogens such as Fusarium, other fungi such as ergot and other moisture-related issues such as mold. Among mitigation solutions, CBS offers NutraMix™, a feed enhancer that supports safe, hiqh-quality feed as well as animal benefits. NutraMix is available for use with feed supply for both monogastric and ruminant livestock.

CBS Bio Platforms is an innovation-focused company that researches, develops and manufactures a wide range of bio-based products used in feed, food and industrial applications. More information on CBS Feed Science Platforms (FSPs) is available at fsp.cbsbioplatforms.com and complete CBS Bio Platforms information is available at www.cbsbioplatforms.com

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