Alkastraw provides numerous advantages:
Alkalinity helps helps buffer rumen pH
Provides effective fibre
The treatment reaction enhances digestibility of the plant cell wall
Highly effective form of structural fibre which is easy to handle and feed
Increased crop protein levels provide a cost-effective product
A stable feed mix is created with no fermentation losses
Alkastraw allows a wider crop harvest window
What is Alkastraw?
Alkastraw is widely used to improve ration structure in modern, high fibre dry cow diets; especially with Total Mixed Rations. Alkastraw incorporated into a balanced diet will improve rumen pH and function, supporting performance and overall animal health. Alkastraw production provides a viable option to provide the important straw component for the diet. Ready to feed out of the clamp, straight into the diet, without baling which can be difficult to handle and chop.
The use of straw in dairy and beef diets to improve ration structure, and in modern high-fibre dry cow diets, is generally regarded as desirable. In particular, this is true with regard to Total Mixed Ration (TMR) diets. However, on many farms the cost and practicality of preparing baled straw for feeding is not always easy.
In practice this straw is the most concentrated form of structural fibre, sometimes called physically effective fibre (peNDF). It is important in intensive diets to support and stabilise rumen function. In high-fibre dry cow diets it provides bulk with low nutrient density.
When our customers produce Alkalage from mature whole crop cereals, a substantial portion of the material is chopped straw providing the characteristics noted above. This is one of the great values of Alkalage. However, for many diets the grain portion of Alkalage provides too much energy. Or the farm may prefer to harvest cereals as grain from either conventional grain processing or as Alkagrain.
In these cases, Alkastraw production provides a viable option to provide this important straw component for the diet ready to feed out of the stack, straight into the diet without baling.