The production of own grain for feeding pigs, cattle, poultry and even horses – in the past this was the norm in many farms. Nowadays, there are alternative mobile fee-paying mills moving from farm to farm. Or you can buy a completely ready feed. On the other hand, a very sophisticated feed production technology is now available which makes it easy and precise to cultivate this “field”. Therefore, quite a few farmers ask: is my own feed production suitable for the farm? After all, you need not only special equipment for feed processing, but also conveyor and storage technologies. Grain does not just have to be crushed or grinded and mixed. It should also be transported and stored before and after processing. In fact, the whole process from the combine to the feeding is important for evaluating the economic efficiency of domestic feed production. NEUERO feed technology experts have put together the advantages and disadvantages of your own feed production for you.
Independence from external services
One of the obvious advantages of own feed production is independence from a fee-paying mill or a supplier of the finished feed. In addition to costs, there is no time to wait for mill or delivery. Due to easy availability of component storage, the mill is no longer needed. What is really in the feed? How fresh is the feed? Is the feed structure appropriate to my ideas or suitable for my animals? These uncertainties in the purchase of finished feed are also eliminated.
Constant feed availability
Another advantage: there is always fresh feed of your own cultivation! Animals love fresh feed. They contain more nutrients and vitamins, they are easier to digest and use. The higher the feed intake, the lower the feed choice. You can also easily produce small quantities to supply small batches as needed. The feed is not spoiled due to long storage time. And last but not least: using your own grain, you meet the growing demand of consumers for regionality.
Optimum feed quality
Optimum feed quality is the main thing in livestock farming! Each type of animal and sometimes every stage of growth requires a special composition and structure of the feed. If you squeeze or grind and mix the feed yourself, you can adapt the recipes and structure to the needs of your animals. Thanks to direct access to the recipe/structure, a quick change of feed is also possible. For example, medications may be added in case of illness. Those who feed with fresh feed of optimal quality have healthy animal. And they can count on faster maturity, first-class meat or product quality.
Reduced feed costs
Those who grind and mix themselves can also save a lot of money. Firstly, by eliminating the cost of services and external personnel. Secondly, by minimizing the risk of rising grain prices. Feed costs for proprietary mixtures can be calculated relatively accurately. According to studies, own mixtures – depending on the type of animals and the required amount of feed – up to 4 euros per decitonne cheaper than the purchased feed.
Quality benefits overweight
Of course, during making your own feeds, you must consider the fact that you need the appropriate spatial and financial parameters for your own milling and mixing systems: the system and components require space and the transformed space is required.
But this also applies to finished feed. In addition, cereals, additives, soybeans, vitamins, etc. should be stored and be in stock. The electrical connection indicators of the house must also be checked. The drive power of the mills is from 7.5 to 22.0 kW. Mixers and conveyor technology require additional electricity. But especially at old agricultural enterprises in the open air, the need for electric “afforestation” reduced the risk of fire and minimized short circuits. Required maintenance and cleaning work less important.
After weighing all the advantages and disadvantages that own milling/mixing system has in agricultural business, at the very end the decision in favor of its use usually outweighs. Such an investment is also worthwhile for small businesses. It’s all for the benefit of your animals and increases your profit!