Six years ago, Chris Collier went to Tasmania to see farmers who were using a potent probiotic – BioRumen – to substantially improve feed conversion.
“I was so impressed with what I saw that I eventually set up Probiotic Revolution to import it into New Zealand,” says Chris.
“With improved feed conversion one farmer there was able to drop his grain inputs from six to 5kg/cow/day during the summer.”
Chris is now seeing similar results here. A Matamata farmer first started using BioRumen in January. He immediately noticed that cows were leaving more grass behind, so instead of reducing feed inputs he was able to lengthen his summer rotation.
“There can be huge benefits in having a longer rotation coming into a drought but the downside to this can be poorer quality pasture. However, BioRumen, with its 11 components, is particularly good at breaking down fibre as evidenced by much shorter fibres in the dung.
“So it is great at getting more energy from summer pasture and maize or grass silage.”
Coming out of the drought, cows have difficulty handling the change in diet with lush grass growth.
“Gut micro-flora has to change to cope with the change in diet so cows can show signs of acidosis, lose weight, and acidosis related foot issues increase. BioRumen helps overcome these issues.”
One farmer who introduced BioRumen when he had lush feed in the autumn was able to reduce palm kernel inputs by 2kg/cow and had close to a five per cent lift in milk protein.