Coping with fodder shortage
When fodder availability, or more precisely long fibre, is reduced, feed buying decisions need to be made carefully. Feed quality, supply and price risks need to be actively managed, rather than left to chance. Alternative fibre options may aneed to be considered.
While there are several fibre sources which may be suitable for dairy stock, they vary in nutritive value, digestibility, effective fibre value, and may present risks such as ruminal acidosis and chemical residues. Maximum daily feeding rates are therefore recommended for alternative fibre sources, and they must be supplemented with high-energy feeds and protein sources as part of a balanced diet.
These factsheets can help dairy farmers make informed decisions under conditions of reduced fodder availability.
Please note – the links below are pdfs, they may take a few seconds to open.
Briefings, workshops & field days
A series of 2-3 hour farmer workshops provided technical information, a four-step process for managing the feed fibre shortage and encouraged farmers to seek the advice of service providers. A total of 38 workshops and 8 field days were held over three months. 603 farmers and 131 service providers attended.
A free, confidential, 90 minute, 1-on 1 consultation with a nutrition and business management specialist was offered to help dairy and beef farmers. More than 220 1-on-1 consultations were delivered.