switching from cmr to supplementary: to curd or not to curd?
To the average person, one milk powder can seem more or less like another. But there are some crucial differences between the Ngahiwi Premium and Supplementary range. The first is curding v non-curding, and the second is the all-important price. The curding nature of the Premium product plays a crucial role in helping the calf develop properly, but given the premium price tag of the product, do we really need to feed them this until weaning? (we’re not just in farming for the exercise and fresh air, you know…)
Many calf rearers choose to switch from CMR to Supplementary after the first 14-21 days, and Ngahiwi encourages it. Our Premium CMR is a casein dominant, whole milk powder-based product that curds to give the calves maximum benefit to overcome what we call “the 10-day blues”. Once they’ve enjoyed all the higher fat and protein, not to mention the pro and prebiotics, it’s actually of more benefit to transition them onto other feeds like grass and meal. The idea is to develop their rumen, and — much like having a thick shake versus having a glass of milk — the Supplementary leaves their stomach less full to encourage their appetite for other feed. Our Supplementary is made from a higher percentage of whey proteins, which do not form a curd, aiding in quicker digestion which also encourages earlier dry matter intake, so switching is a win-win.
With the cost of Ngahiwi Supplementary being around $20 a bag less than the Premium CMR, and the average farmer going through about 2 bags of powder per calf, that’s about $20 per head onto your bottom line at the end of the season. With a savings like this per head, we think its well worth investigating.