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Processing of corn silage has become a more common practice as it can improve fermentation. This increases the starches and sugars available to the silage micro-organisms, which reduces dry matter losses in the silo and helps to break up corn cobs, improving fibre consumption.

Although mechanical processing has improved over the past few years, it is still common to have very poorly processed corn. How well the kernel is processed is directly related to how well starch will digest in lactating dairy cows. If it is processed too fine it will affect rumen health and lactating performance, too coarse will lack any benefit.

SGS offers an optional test, Corn Silage Processing Score, to evaluate kernel processing and determine the state of processing in stored corn silage. This test involves shaking silage over a series of sieves and measuring the percent of starch passing through a 4.75-mm sieve. Turn-around time for this test is 2 days and can be added to any of our packages.

What investment costs less than a dollar per acre and has the potential to return many multiples? The answer is simple: soil testing.

Do-It-Yourself sampling with a Basic I analysis (pH, P, K, Mg) is priced at $14.25 per sample. Representing 25 acres per sample, and maintaining a 3 year sampling rotation, the overall cost is $.019 per acre per year!

Using our custom field technicians to collect samples, the cost would still be less than $0.60/ac/yr.

Given that an up-to-date soil test allows for better agronomic nutrient planning, and has the potential to increase yields (or for those with high-testing soils, reduce inputs), it is difficult for most operations not to justify this small investment.

SGS is proud to exhibit at the 2015 Canadian Greenhouse Conference at the Scotiabank Convention Centre October 7-8 in Niagara Falls.

Again this year, we are the proud sponsors of the CGC two-day Bus Tour from the conference to Essex County, visiting multiple operations in Kingsville and Ruthven.

Attendees of the conference are invited to visit the SGS booth #913 to pick up supplies or drop off samples. We look forward to seeing you there!

For further information, please contact:

Jack Legg, CCA-ON
Branch Manager, Agronomist
503 Imperial Rd. N., Unit 1
Guelph, Ontario N1H 6T9
t: +1 519 837 1600