With the rising costs of corn and soybeans, farmers have been looking for ways to save money on feed for their animals. A University of Minnesota-Crookston (UMC) researcher might have found a way to do that.
According to Harouna Maiga, UMC department of agriculture professor, substituting some of the soybean meal and all of the beet pulp in the animal's diet with mustard bran increased daily milk production by about 4 pounds and did not change milk composition or feed intake. The mustard bran did not cause any changes in milk flavor or color, and, it is a less expensive option than other feeds; something that could be especially important as more feed crops are used for biofuels like ethanol.
"The study concludes that mustard bran could be used to lower feed cost and increase milk production," said Maiga. "It could be fed to beef cattle, sheep and swine."
Mustard bran is a by-product of mustard milling. It is the outer-layer of whole mustard seed. Maiga is available to answer questions about the use of mustard bran as a replacement feed for dairy cattle.