Farmers urged to make the most of home grown cereals

Paul Sloan, Nutritionist at Tullyherron Farm Feeds, Philip Glenn, milk producer Carryduff and Wesley Stevenson, W&C Stevenson agri contracting services. Wesley provides a grain bruising service to the Glenn family.

Paul Sloan, Nutritionist at Tullyherron Farm Feeds, Philip Glenn, milk producer Carryduff and Wesley Stevenson, W&C Stevenson agri contracting services. Wesley provides a grain bruising service to the Glenn family.

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Tullyherron Farm Feeds’ nutritionist Paul Sloan is advising farmers to make best use of home grown cereals over the coming months.

“Yes it has been a difficult harvest,” he said.

“But home grown barley and wheat still represent an extremely valuable feed source on livestock farms.”

He continued: “The challenge confronting growers is that of making sure that the cereals available to them are properly balanced from a nutritional point of view.

“At Tullyherron Farm Feeds we provide a free nutrition advisory service and manufacture bespoke blends, so as to meet the specific needs of individual farmers.”

From a forage perspective, Paul is confirming that first cut silage quality is slightly lower this year, compared with what was available in 2015.

“But these forages are still acceptable, from a feeding point of view. However, second cuts are significantly below par in terms of both their energy and protein values,” he said.

Paul also confirmed that there is significant scope to feed high quality concentrates to dairy cows and other livestock this winter.

“Factors, such as currency, will provide a bit of volatility on grain and commodity markets over the coming months. But despite this, there should be considerable scope for farmers to offer concentrate feeds in an extremely competitive manner this winter.

“As a business we work closely with cereal growers in Northern Ireland and those farmers who produce grain for home feeding purposes.

“But these materials must be processed and stored properly on-farm. This is why we have a close working relationship with contractors, such as W&C Stevenson from Carryduff, who provide grain bruising and urea treatment services.”

Mountnorris-based Tullyherron Farm Feeds has a growing customer base throughout Counties Down, Armagh and East Tyrone. The company manufactures a range of high quality blends for dairy, beef and sheep farmers.

“All our diets are manufactured from individual ingredients of the highest quality. The same commitment holds where supplements are concerned,” said Paul.

“But each customer is different. This is reflected in the type of livestock available on the farm and the diets they require. Silage quality will also vary from farm to farm. And again this requires the concentrate feeds on offer to be balanced on a bespoke basis.

“We provide a free silage testing service. This is backed up with advisory visits, which include stock assessments. It all adds up to a comprehensive nutrition service.”

Paul also highlighted the recent investment in a new, computerised mill at Tullyherron Farm Feeds.

“This reflects our commitment to provide customers with feeds of the highest quality,” he stressed.

“Obviously, our blends can be included in total mixed rations. But they can also be fed as a top-up for dairy cows in-parlour.”

For further information, telephone Paul Sloan on 07866 737 300.