Better chow yields more milk

A more nutritious form of corn for dairy cows boosts farm profits, teen investigator finds

By Sid Perkins, 13:00 PM May 23, 2013

Bennett Lee Gibson, a 15-year-old dairy farmer from Ogden, Utah, found that feeding dairy cows a costly but more digestible corn boosted milk production — and his profits. Credit: Patrick Thornton, SSP

Sometimes less really is more. Though a variety of corn known as brown midrib doesn’t grow as tall as other types of corn, it does provide cows with better nutrition. The rub: It costs more. But the value of the bonus milk produced by cows fed the short corn more than covers its extra costs, a 15-year-old dairy farmer now reports.

Many farmers feed their dairy cows silage. This includes not only grain but also the shredded leaves and stems of the plants from which the grain had been harve...

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