TopFodder is a joint initiative of Dairy Australia and the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries which aims to improve the quality of silage produced on Australian farms.
Part of the TopFodder program is a course aimed at teaching participants how to successfully make, store and feed-out silage on Australian dairy farms. The course is based primarily on the technical information in the Successful Silage manual that was initially developed in 2003 and partly funded by Dairy Australia.
Currently, TopFodder is run as a two-day workshop through Dairy Australia's regional teams.
The key aims of TopFodder workshops are to:
- Improve silage quality
- Reduce conservation losses during harvest, storage and feed-out
- Improve farm profitability by helping farmers consider silage-making in the context of the overall farm system
During the course, the following topics are covered in detail:
- The science of silage-making
- Assessing the feeding value of your silage
- Selecting crops to make silage
- Additives and inoculants
- Harvesting high-quality silage
- Storage of silage
- Feedout losses
- Economics of silage-making
In addition, participants will also get a printed copy of the Successful Silage manual, which is the most comprehensive technical resource available on silage making in Australia. Individual chapters from the Successful Silage manual can also be found on the Making Silage page.
Dairy farmers interested in taking part in a TopFodder workshop should contact their local regional team to register interest.