ASK YOUR NUTRITIONIST ABOUT
POWER Total mixed rations (TMR) should be as consistent as
the sun’s rising and setting. That doesn’t happen by
itself though. As producers and their advisors meet in
the conference room (or kitchen), the conversation will
turn to any of a number of factors that can cause un-
wanted variations in the herd’s TMRs.
By John Miller
The beauty of properly prepared TMRs is that each bite
contains exactly the same proportion of forages and concentrates.
Every mouthful delivers a balanced ration. With
today’s use of wet ingredients – water, light whey,
molasses, etc. – unwanted variations can occur if
wet ingredients are not properly applied and mixed.
1) What differences can occur?
The TMR’s uniformity suffers when wet ingre-
dients are improperly added. Consider a recent sce-
nario with a mid-lactation diet that contains liquid
whey (see Table 1). Once the TMR was delivered
■ John Miller
to the feed bunk, ﬁ ve samples of approximately
is a regional sales
manager in Califor- 1.5 lb. each were taken at different locations. Each
nia for Diamond
sample was put through a 3-box Penn State Par-
V. Contact him by ticle Separator and each fraction was analyzed for
diamondv.com or moisture.
FYI phone (559) 731-
7146 or visit www.
diamondv.com. 2) How are cows affected?
Anytime TMRs are not consistent, cows are af-
fected. Consistent TMRs nurture highly efﬁ cient
Please turn to page 43
Variation in dry matter levels in
mid-lactation TMR with liquid whey
Dry Matter (%)
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