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Feed Calculations

Leigh Jason

Nutrient/Energy Content of a Feed


Nutrient content is expressed as a percentage (mg/kg, g/kg, etc)
Example: a feed contains 10% crude protein, or there are 100g of protein in every kg

Energy content (digestible energy, DE) is expressed as unit of energy per kg


Calorie (cal): amount of heat required to raise temperature of 1g of water from 14.5 to 15.5C Kilocalorie (kcal): 1000 cal Megacalorie (Mcal): 1000 kcal (use for large animals)

Water Content
As-fed basis
Amount contained in the feed as it would be fed to the animal, including water

Dry matter (DM) basis


Amount contained in only the dry matter fraction, without water

Conversion
% Nutrient As Fed % Nutrient DM % Feed DM 100% DM
Example: a feed is 9% CP on an as-fed basis, and contains 60% DM. What is the % CP on a DM basis?

9 x 60 100

x 15%

Example: a feed is 9% CP on a DM basis, and contains 60% DM. What is the % CP on an as-fed basis?

x 9 60 100

x 5.4%

Conversion
Feed DE As Fed Feed DE DM % Feed DM 100% DM
Example: a feed has 1.5 Mcal DE on an as-fed basis, and contains 80% DM. What is the feed DE on a DM basis?

1.5 x 80 100

x 1.9 Mcal

Example: a feed 1.5 Mcal DE on a DM basis, and contains 80% DM. What is the feed DE on an as-fed basis?

x 1.5 80 100

x 1.2 Mcal

Conversion
kg As Fed x % DM kg DM
kg DM kg As Fed % DM
Example: what is the DM weight of 10 kg as-fed of a feed that is 40% DM?

10 kg As Fed x 0.4 4 kg DM
Example: what is the as-fed weight of 10 kg DM of a feed that is 40% DM? 10 kg DM 25 kg As Fed 0.4

Rules of Thumb
Converting as-fed to DM
Nutrient concentration will increase Weight will decrease

Converting DM to as-fed
Nutrient concentration will decrease Weight will increase

Dry Matter Content


If it is not specified, then assume the following DM values: Hay
90% DM

Straw/Stover
90% DM

Concentrate
90% DM

Silage
1/3 DM (~35% DM)

Fresh forage
25% DM

Feed Calculation
Which ration provides the greatest DE?
3 kg alfalfa hay, as-fed 9 kg alfalfa silage, asfed 2 kg oats, as-fed
Feed Alfalfa hay Alfalfa silage Oats DE (Mcal/kg) on DM basis 1.5 0.75 2.0

Feed Calculation
Answer
3 kg alfalfa hay, as-fed
4.05 Mcal Feed Alfalfa hay Alfalfa silage Oats DE (Mcal/kg) on DM basis 1.5 0.75 2.0

9 kg alfalfa silage, asfed


2.25 Mcal

2 kg oats, as-fed
3.6 Mcal