The farming industry in New Zealand is world-leading. For our farmers, it is so integral to treat our animals right and ensure that livestock is getting the best nutrients. At Ag-Imports, we provide mineral blocks for cattle on NZ farms. Our products are a natural and easy way to balance the diets of your cattle.
The right dietary supplements for cows are necessary for helping them digest grass properly, have more energy, and better quality of life. Whether you have a dairy or beef cattle farm, making sure your cows are happy and healthy is vital.
We provide mineral blocks with different compounds to address every cow health need. They help stimulate your cow’s appetite and digest nutrients. You will know what your cow needs by assessing your farming purpose, be it beef or dairy.
While our biggest market is for cattle farms, due to the scale of New Zealand’s dairy industry, farmers can use our salt and mineral blocks for horses, sheep, and goats as well.
Choosing the right mineral blocks for your cattle
The kind of block you choose will depend on the age of your animals and the season. It also depends on what they are already eating, whether it be grass, hay or grains. Further, what do you, as the cattle farmer, need from them? Is it weight gain, better fertility, or milk production?
All cattle require a certain amount of minerals to ensure a prosperous life. Poor health in your cattle results in less quality of life for them and financial strain for you. Young calves and pregnant or lactating heifers are especially vulnerable to the health risks of mineral deficiency.
Mineral deficiency in cattle can lead to poor health and even death. New Zealand pastures provide some of the necessary minerals. In the event of a dry season or flood, however, the grazing of cows can be compromised and will take away this vital part of their diets.
Read on to find out more about the most important components in mineral blocks for cattle NZ.
Calcium is a critical part of what makes cow’s milk so nutritious, and it is the most important mineral in cattle diet. Signs your cows might be ingesting an unbalanced amount of calcium are kidney stones and brittle bones.
Our Calcifort multi-mineral salt block balances the right amount of calcium for your cows. It is molasses-based, which makes it tastier for cows and gives them more energy. Calcium makes happy and strong cows.
An essential part of what gives cows energy, phosphorus is also a key ingredient in their reproductive cycle. After calcium, phosphorus is the second most crucial mineral for keeping their bones strong.
Your cows might be low in phosphorus if you have noticed low calving rates, cows failing to cycle or conceive, increased abortions, or calf mortality. Your cattle might have brittle bones and excessive lameness. Another sign of phosphorus deficiency is cows chewing on sticks or rocks, signalling a depraved appetite and risking botulism.
Luckily, cows love phosphorus! Mineral blocks for cattle NZ that are high in phosphorus, such as Fortamin, installed in a readily accessible place will improve growth and fertility rates.
Cattle with a sufficient protein intake will have better growth rates. Inversely, not enough protein will result in weight loss. Protein is essential for beef cattle, breeding heifers, and young calves. It also plays a vital role in milk production.
Magnesium is typically not palatable for cows, but it is excellent for disease prevention. Mixing it with molasses in a mineral block is a great way to ensure your cattle get the immune support they need.
Copper is good for cattle fertility, growth, and pigmentation.
Cobalt assists cattle’s bodies in the making of haemoglobin. This assists with the transfer of oxygen around the body.
Iodine assists with cow’s strength and energy metabolism.
Appropriate levels of selenium can prevent muscular degeneration in calves.
Zinc encourages good eating habits, quality growth, and strong hooves.
The history of mineral blocks
Mineral blocks are an effective way of giving cattle the nutrients they need. It is so great because humans didn’t think of it – cows did!
Wild animals and herbivores worldwide have nourished themselves with natural salt and mineral licks for thousands of years. It’s not just for cows and sheep – many herbivores use mineral deposits in their diets, including deer, goats, moose, squirrels, elephants, and giraffes!
Hunter-gatherers, prehistoric and present, use mineral sites to locate and hunt cattle. Artificial salt licks are used in the wild as well to support wildlife.
Because of the long history of cattle using these mineral resources to nourish themselves well before humans came along, it is natural for them to gravitate towards artificial mineral blocks on the farm. This is a slow-deposit way for cows to steadily remain healthy and well.
Mineral blocks today
At Ag-Imports, we provide cost-effective solutions for the dairy industry. Our products are easy to install and require very little maintenance.
Unwell cattle, low fertility and lactation rates, high mortality, more injuries and more lameness are real problems that farmers need to look out for. Any of these issues can arise if your cattle are not properly looked after. They will slow productivity and create many expenses for you.
There are so many benefits to keeping your herd fit and well-nourished using mineral blocks for cattle NZ. Keeping your cows healthy is a way to follow better ethical practices for your farm. You will see the benefits of better growth and fertility. These will increase productivity on your farm and give you more profit.
If you have any questions about our products, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our staff. Here at AG-Imports, we strive to promote the welfare of the animals that constitute the backbone of New Zealand’s economy. Our dairy industry is the biggest dairy exporter in the world. We want to demonstrate leadership when it comes to treating our animals ethically and producing quality dairy.