Ask a Nutritionist: If I am feeding Sure Champ do I need to provide a free choice mineral?

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The answer to this question is dependent on what specie and what feeds you are feeding. Cattle do not have a requirement for a specific level of vitamins or minerals listed on a feed tag. They have requirements that are based on the physiological state of the animal (growing, pregnancy, breeding, ect). Requirements are increased during times of stress, such as weaning, showing or calving. It is important to remember that the required nutrients are provided through all of the ingredients in the diet including forage, grain, water, and supplements.

 

Our nutritionists can certainly take all of your information and provide you with a more definitive answer, however below are some general guidelines.

 

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Market Cattle

Generally speaking when finishing cattle such as a market steer or heifer, Sure Champ will provide all of the phosphorous, potassium, trace minerals and vitamins for non-stress situations. What may be lacking is additional calcium in a high grain diet. Most grains are high in phosphorous and low in calcium, especially in the case of byproduct based feeds. In this case a product like Concept Aid 0 or VitaFerm Feedlot Medicated might be recommended, in addition to Sure Champ, as they are high calcium, low phosphorous minerals. Concept-Aid 0 and VitaFerm Feedlot Medicated are not well suited for free choice feeding, so they should be mixed into the ration. VF Cattleman’s Blend or Beefmaker Mineral are two free choice options with additional calcium that could also be used. However, the additional phosphorus in these formulas will be of limited value to the animal’s performance.

Breeding Cattle

When heifers are on a high forage diet/moderate grain diet you may consider VF Concept-Aid 5/S or VF Cattleman’s Blend, as both contain 5% phosphorus to match a moderate level of grain supplementation. In these cases the additional calcium and phosphorus will likely be useful in achieving breeding and animal performance targets when fed together with Sure Champ. Additionally since less grain is being fed the additional phosphorous should be beneficial in these diets to ensure breeding success.

High Stress Situations

In high stress situations like weaning, showing and shipping we hope that you always consider the Vita Charge product line. These products are designed specifically for high stress situations where cattle are likely to go off feed. The Vita Charge Stress Tub contains additional calcium and other macro minerals and stress level vitamin trace mineral supplementation in addition to Amaferm. It works great with Sure Champ for that extra boost during those times you need consistent intake and additional vitamin mineral supplementation. The Vita Charge gel caps, paste, drench and dispersible powder provide additional Amaferm, B-vitamins, and trace minerals to help keep animals on feed.

Conclusion

Remember it is important to work with your Area Sales Manager or one of our nutritionists as we can give you recommendations for your particular situation. And remember all of the supplements in the world won’t help if the animal won’t consume them. Sure Champ and Vita Charge help take the guess work and nutritional limitations out of your feeding program, ultimately helping you achieve your performance goals. If you would like one of our nutritionists to look at your ration, or perhaps you have a different nutrition question please fill out our contact us form and we’ll be in touch.

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