Binder For Animal Feed Blocks
LignoBond DD is a very efficient binder for feed blocks.
The production of feed blocks involves the mixing of supplementary ingredients formulated to provide the nutritional deficiencies of grazing hill farmed pasture in winter months. The mixture is either cold compressed into a block at high pressure (2000 - 3000 psi) or conditioned with steam and hot compressed, the block can then be placed on the hillside for animals to consume.
An important feature of producing feed blocks is to ensure they are not too soft as they will either be consumed to quickly or deteriorate during inclement weather. It is therefore important to use a lignosulphonate binder to ensure the correct hardness is achieved. Borregaard LignoTech recommends the use of up to 10% of LignoBond DD for this purpose.
Hill farmed sheep and cattle rely upon low quality native pastures for their nutrient. These pastures are characterised by poor protein and energy content during the winter months (Davies 1988), with quality increasing rapidly during the summer (Miller 2002). Consequently, low stocking rates typical of many of the World’s other rangelands pastures prevails (Thompson and Miller 2000). Recent studies have identified that insufficient protein, phosphorus and energy intake during the autumn, winter and early spring seasons are the cause of poor growth rates of weaner sheep and cattle (Miller 2002; Miller and Thompson 2002). In addition, poor winter nutrition of pregnant ewes causes foetal restriction during pregnancy that affects wool follicle development in their offspring (Baughan et al 1993). Sheep and cattle grazing hill farmed pasture in the winter months consume insufficient protein to maintain optimal rumen fermentation.
Ammonia concentrations in rumen fluid below the 5mg/100ml to 8mg/100ml range is generally recommended as the minimum for efficient rumen function (Satter and Slyter 1974; Pisulewski et al 1981; SCA 1990). Feed blocks have been widely advocated as supplements to increase the intake and digestibility of low quality native pastures and roughages (Leng 1984).
Source: Miller S M and Thompson R P 2003: Developing urea-molasses feed blocks in the Falkland Islands. Livestock Research for Rural Development (15) 3. Retrieved August 17, 2011, from http://www.lrrd.org/lrrd15/3/mill153.htm